chapter  2
7 Pages

Lecture 5

Today I will try to tell you (I don’t know what will come of it) to show you how to apply memory of feeling to practical work, how to look for feeling, how to combine and develop them, how to use imagination, substitutes, etc. I am purposely taking a theme which is unprepared by me, so that you will not get the impression of a mind which is working with a thing that does not have to be found. I could take a scene from a play which we have already done, but I think that from my looking for the things really as if I were working on the play you will get much more. The play is The Scarlet Letter, and probably all of you know about

the scene where Hester Prynne is set up for public shame, which is to say led through the crowd to the market place and put on the scaffold to stay twelve hours – from dawn to sunset – with the scarlet letter on her bosom. While this is going on, her husband is entering the town after being absent twelve or fifteen years. The first thing he sees in the town is his wife standing on the scaffold with a child in her arms which he knows is not his child. I shall read you the scene:

CHILLINGSWORTH: I pray you, good sir, who is this public woman? Wherefore is she set up here to public shame?