excerpt from Dearest Beloved: The Hawthornes and the Making of the Middle-Class Family
In this excerpt from Dearest Beloved: The Hawthornes and the Making of the Middle-Class Family by T. Walter Herbert, he discusses a link between Zenobia and women in other Hawthorne novels. (courtesy of University of California, Berkeley Press)
“The women in Blithedale are also native to Hawthorne's abiding perplexities. Zenobia is manifestly analogous to Hester Prynne and also to Hepzibah Pyncheon: all three have an air of aristocratic pride and are defiantly at odds with the world around them. The pairing of Zenobia with her docile half-sister, Priscilla, recapitulates a relation Hawthorne had developed in an early tale, ‘The White Old Maid,’ and pursued through Hilda and Miriam in The Marble Faun” (9).