The Scarlet Letter

What point is Hawthorne making about an individual's ability to separate one self from one's wrongdoings?

Chapter 5

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Hester is not able to separate herself; her A is a constant reminder as is Pearl. However, the A also changes and separates her in the sense that she is not the same person who committed the wrong doing to start with. Dimmesdale, however, does separate himself in public, but through his self-flagellation shows that one cannot really separate the two when the wrongdoing is in secret.