The Scarlet Letter

Teacher Guide: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

[Originally published in Ready Readers: High School Literature, Vol. 1]

This renowned tale of Hester Prynne, forced to wear the scarlet "A" for her sin of adultery, often gets a bad rap. Its Puritanical setting leaves many readers believing Hawthorne is either encouraging radical individualism or strict morality. Our teacher guide will help you explore this controversy, and ask questions of the text concerning guilt and freedom, conscience and redemption. We hope you'll come away liking this great American novel a little better.