Enriched Classicsoffer readers accessible editions of great works of literature enhanced by helpful notes and commentary. Each book includes educational tools alongside the text, enabling students and readers alike to gain a deeper and more developed understanding of the writer and their work.
Set two centuries before Hawthorne’s own time, The Scarlet Letter follows heroine Hester Prynne who is compelled by her Puritan society to wear a scarlet letter ‘A’ on her clothes as a symbol of her sin: adultery. Accompanied by colorful and flawed characters, including the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale who broods over a long-hidden secret, and Hester’s husband Roger Chillingsworth who thirsts for vengeance, The Scarlet Letter, America’s first psychological novel, is a masterpiece that explores humanity’s unending struggles with pride, sin, and guilt.
Enriched Classicsenhance your engagement by introducing and explaining the historical and cultural significance of the work, the author’s personal history, and what impact this book had on subsequent scholarship. Each book includes discussion questions that help clarify and reinforce major themes and reading recommendations for further research.
Nathaniel Hawthorne was born in Salem, Massachusetts. He was educated at the Bowdoin College in Maine (1821-24). Between the years 1825 and 1836 Hawthorne worked as a writer and contributor to periodicals. His first novel, Fanshawe, appeared anonymously at his own expense in 1828. In 1842 he married Sophia Peabody, an active participant in the Transcendentalist movement. His marriage to Sophia provided the inspiration for the noble character of Hester Prynne. He died in 1864.