Nathaniel Hawthorne’s classic American novel masterfully explores not only the historical and moral roots of America, but the terrible results of one sinful act upon all those involved. Hawthorne mixes Puritanism with the birth of Romanticism as he examines sin, guilt, vengeance, and redemption.
Hester Prynne has traveled alone to America to prepare a home for herself and her husband. In her husband's long absence Hester commits adultery and gives birth to a child. In accordance with the town's strict moral law, Hester is punished, (though leniently for this time period). She is sentenced to stand for several hours on the town's scaffold exposed to public shame and to wear a scarlet "A" for the rest of her life.
Hester's partner in sin, a prominent member of the community, remains silent about his own guilt, and Hester refuses to reveal his identity. Meanwhile, Hester's long-absent husband, Roger Chillingworth, returns on the very day Hester must endure her public humiliation. He decides to remain silent concerning his own identity but determines to seek revenge on Hester's lover.
Through Nathaniel Hawthorne’s timeless tale of sin, guilt, vengeance, and redemption, students will learn:
Background Information: Do some research to learn more about the early history of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Romanticism, and Transcendentalism.
Vocabulary words used throughout the novel, utilizing a variety of activities to stimulate retention and growth.
Literary Techniques: Grammar and parts of speech, root words, foreshadowing, imagery, synonym, personification, compare & contrast, in context.
Moral Lessons and Character Values: Keeping secrets, lying, shame, penance, and martyrdom, judging others, correction and pride, vengeance, confession, subjective morality, reconciliation with God.
Activities and Writing Assignments: Pre-reading analysis papers on civil government, biblical view of sin, biblical response to people. Brook Farm research. Point-of-view summary essay. Puritanism research paper. Analyze patterns in novel.
Suggestions for Further Reading: We include an in-depth reading list of more books by the same author(s) and other books that tie in with, or are similar to, The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne.
All of the unit lessons are written from a Christian perspective!
This was my first study guide. I think it went really well! Just one suggestion: I wish there was some space between answers in the answer document. Also, it would be nice to have the font size a little larger for my 40ish year old eyes... ;)
Excellent guide from Christian worldview. I really like the questions and the vocabulary exercises. My students enjoyed doing it. I highly recommend it.
good vocabulary exercises and the study questions are on a high level, for the most part.
Progeny Press study guides are always very helpful
It appears this is going to be a great addition for full understanding of the book
This is a wonderful enhancement to book study. It is well written with a Christian perspective in view and incorporates scripture into many of the questions.
My son just finished the unit on The Scarlet Letter using the Progeny Press Study Guide. When finding out his American Literature homeschooling co-op class was canceled, I searched for some teacher's aides on-line to help me teach this class myself. I was thrilled to find this Study Guide and it was exactly what I was looking for. Also glad to find a guide for every work we chose to read this year in the Progeny Press series! Well-written, easy to use, good mix of vocabulary, comprehension, and critical thinking questions, and helpful answer key for teachers. Thank you!