The Scarlet Letter - Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 5 Summary

In this chapter, Hester is freed from prison. Although she could leave Boston and disappear into a safer, more anonymous part of the world, she, like the author, Hawthorne, as described in the Introduction, is drawn to her hometown, the seat of her shame. So, despite her options, she will wear the scarlet letter in the midst of her oppressors.

Hester did not succumb to poverty, despite her situation. For she had a great talent, that of needlework. With this talent, she could create a multitude of commercially desirable merchandise- ranging from embroidered gloves to baby linen to the apparel of the dead- from scarves for the military to bands for the ministers to caps for babies, her needlework, except for weddings, was eagerly sought by her fellow citizens.

Besides sewing to survive, she used her skill to help make garments for the poor. She also gave...

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This section contains 352 words
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The Scarlet Letter from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.