The Threads of The Scarlet Letter: A Study of Hawthorne's Transformative Art

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University of Delaware Press, 2003 - 201 Seiten
The Threads of The Scarlet Letter offers new discoveries regarding the origins of Hawthorne's masterpiece, as well as critical interpretations based on these discoveries. Relying on a blend of close reading, biographical analysis, and archival research, this book demonstrates anew the power of traditional scholarship. The Threads of The Scarlet Letter illuminates Hawthorne's transformation of Poe's celebrated tale The Tell-Tale Heart and Lowell's long-neglected poem A Legend of Brittany and, identifying the hitherto-unknown author of the seminal narrative The Salem Belle, investigates Hawthorne's brilliant borrowing from that novel as well. The present volume argues that Hawthorne repeatedly attenuated his sources, but also allowed sufficient detail to permit their recognition. Furthermore, this volume elaborates Hawthorne's reworking of formal traditions in The Scarlet Letter--traditions that importantly clarify the meaning of the whole. The Scarlet Letter is shown to be a complex rendering of man's fall and redemption, and a triumphant assertion of literary vocation. The Threads of The Scarlet Letter includes a useful bibliographical overview of the history of the study of the origins of Hawthorne's greatest work.

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Inhalt

Acknowledgments
9
Introduction
17
A Tale by Poe
22
A Poem by Lowell
36
A Novel by Ebenezer Wheelwright
64
The Matter of Form
97
Conclusion
110
A Bibliographical Overview
113
Notes
125
Bibliography
161
Index
191
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Seite 55 - I will rise now, And go about the city in the streets, And in the broad ways I will seek him whom my soul loveth...
Seite 101 - For, behold, the day cometh, That shall burn as an oven ; And all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble : And the day that cometh shall burn them up, Saith the LORD of hosts, That it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name Shall the Sun of righteousness arise With healing in his wings ; And ye shall go forth, And grow up as calves of the stall.
Seite 102 - Unless the LORD had been my help, my soul had almost dwelt in silence. 18 When I said, My foot slippeth; thy mercy, O LORD, held me up.
Seite 112 - ... about their summits, which, in the last rays of the setting sun, will glow and light up like a crown of glory. At the foot of these fairy mountains, the voyager may have descried the light smoke curling up from a village, whose shingle roofs gleam among the trees, just where the blue tints of the upland melt away into the fresh green of the nearer landscape.
Seite 47 - T is as if a rough oak that for ages had stood, With his gnarled bony branches like ribs of the wood, Should bloom, after cycles of struggle and scathe, With a single anemone trembly and rathe ; His strength is so tender, his...
Seite 112 - And as the moon rose higher the inessential houses began to melt away until gradually I became aware of the old island here that flowered once for Dutch sailors' eyes — a fresh, green breast of the new world. Its vanished trees, the trees that had made way for Gatsby's house, had once pandered in whispers to the last and greatest of all human dreams; for a transitory enchanted moment man must have held his breath in the presence of this continent, compelled into...
Seite 156 - A dark valley between three mighty, heaven-abiding peaks, that almost seem the Trinity, in some faint earthly symbol. So in this vale of Death, God girds us round; and over all our gloom, the sun of Righteousness still shines a beacon and a hope.
Seite 101 - For behold the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven ; and all the proud, yea and all that do wickedly, shall be as stubble : and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
Seite 99 - ... both. All around, there were monuments carved with armorial bearings ; and on this simple slab of slate — as the curious investigator may still discern, and perplex himself with the purport — there appeared the semblance of an engraved escutcheon. It bore a device, a herald's wording of which might serve for a motto and brief description of our now concluded legend ; so sombre is it, and relieved only by one ever-glowing point of light gloomier than the shadow : — "ON A FIELD, SABLE, THE...
Seite 91 - Hutchinson, as the foundress of a religious sect. She might, in one of her phases, have been a prophetess. She might, and not improbably would, have suffered death from the stern tribunals of the period, for attempting to undermine the foundations of the Puritan establishment.

Über den Autor (2003)

Richard Kopley is Associate Professor of English at Penn State DuBois and Head of the Division of English for Penn State Commonwealth College.

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