“‘Soul,’ Revisited”

I think I finally figured out why I hate the word “soul,” and why it bothers me when people use it. When a man claims another man to have none, it shows that this man is looking in the other man for something he can take. When really, interaction is at least as much reflection as it is transaction. So such a complaint is actually just a reflection of the nothing delivered, and as such is naturally irksome.
Ahem, it’s Hawthorne. I was reading this “Custom-House,” which introduces The Scarlet Letter, and which I’m sure I’ve never been through the whole of before. Hawthorne, to me, for all the heat he (rightfully) takes about syntax, does contain tenacity, sensitivity and grit. It does, though, in light of what I’ve said, get back to the whole lens thing, the sense of self in literary observations. Unfounded exertion, to match your own, if you take it, which sometimes we all do.

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