AIdeological Manipulation Strategies of Religion and Emotional Deception: A Study of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter

Mujtaba Mohammedali Yahya Al-Hilo, Haider Saad Yahya Jubran


One of the foundational cornerstones upon which works of literature are built is Religion. It is a motivational ideology that inspires authors to write fiction. Ideological literary works are not mere aesthetic attempts that reflect the unlimited potential ability of literature to present the unthinkable: they are serious works that reflect the very social turmoil that the author has been experiencing in his society. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne perfectly represents this type of genre. He successfully shows the way Religion was ideological manipulated by the authorities in that Puritan society. This paper highlights the different ideological strategies influential individuals employ to change people’s convictions. After a short perusal of the different stages, the theory of ideology has undergone, it presents the most significant ideological factors in the novel depending on various thinkers, mainly Sigmund Freud, Jacques Lacan, and Slavoj Zizek. It also shows the domination of ideology over the life of people: it may be observed in their clothes, customs, cultural attitude, and means of communication. Depending on certain theorists, this research finally proves that it is beyond the possibility of anyone to break the chains of ideology and live in a Real world. The illusion of ideology sneaks into every single detail of people’s lives, as represented in Hawthorne’s novel.


Fantasy, Ideology, Religious Manipulation, Symbolic Structure, Trans-Ideology, The Real

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