Chapter 13 – Another View of Hester
Hester is alarmed at Dimmesdale’s appearance and the change that has taken
place in him over the years. He has changed from someone that she respected into a morally weak person whose courage has all but left him. Feeling guilty, she decides that she must help this man.
Over the years her own position has changed in the community.
Many admire her for the way in which she carries her shame. Her scarlet A now stands for “Able”, but this has come at a price, for she still has no friends, and no love or affection apart from that given to her by Pearl.
She feels that she should warn Dimmesdale concerning her husband and,
therefore, she resolves to meet with Chillingworth in order to solve this problem.
This Chapter describes how Hester’s position in the Puritan community has
Paradoxically, she has become admired and has obtained almost mystical qualities by wearing the badge of shame. This has given her strange power. She also realizes the folly in making an oath to Chillingworth about keeping his identity secret, and she is determined to seek release from this bond.