This essay examines Nathaniel Hawthorne’s literary treatment of the legal battle between religious dissident Anne Hutchinson (1591-1643) and the Puritan establishment of Massachusetts in his early piece “Mrs. Hutchinson” (1830) and in his masterpiece The Scarlet Letter (1850). In “Mrs. Hutchinson,” Hawthorne utilized the story of a woman whom Puritan authorities labeled an ‘antinomian’ (i.e. ‘an opponent of the law’) as a jumping-off point to decry the presence of women in the public sphere in his own time. In particular, Hawthorne sounded the alarm about the growing number of women writers who, in his view, represented a menace to the creation of a strong American literature. Simultaneously troubled and fascinated by Hutchinson, Hawthorne chose her as a model for his heroine Hester Prynne in The Scarlet Letter. In this novel Anne Hutchinson in a sense re-lives as Hester Prynne, whose confrontation with the Boston magistracy and clergy, especially in the first chapters, closely recalls the civil and religious trials brought against her predecessor.

Da Anne Hutchinson a Hester Prynne: donne sotto accusa nell’America di Hawthorne

BUONOMO, LEONARDO
2016

Abstract

This essay examines Nathaniel Hawthorne’s literary treatment of the legal battle between religious dissident Anne Hutchinson (1591-1643) and the Puritan establishment of Massachusetts in his early piece “Mrs. Hutchinson” (1830) and in his masterpiece The Scarlet Letter (1850). In “Mrs. Hutchinson,” Hawthorne utilized the story of a woman whom Puritan authorities labeled an ‘antinomian’ (i.e. ‘an opponent of the law’) as a jumping-off point to decry the presence of women in the public sphere in his own time. In particular, Hawthorne sounded the alarm about the growing number of women writers who, in his view, represented a menace to the creation of a strong American literature. Simultaneously troubled and fascinated by Hutchinson, Hawthorne chose her as a model for his heroine Hester Prynne in The Scarlet Letter. In this novel Anne Hutchinson in a sense re-lives as Hester Prynne, whose confrontation with the Boston magistracy and clergy, especially in the first chapters, closely recalls the civil and religious trials brought against her predecessor.
978-88-8303-740-5
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2884507
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