• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How far is "Silas Marner" a product of its time?

Extracts from this document...


How far is "Silas Marner" a product of its time? George Elliot has given the villagers of Ravaloe the typical strongly knit community characters. In the early nineteenth century, a person's village or town was all-important, providing the sole source of emotional support. She elaborates on the fact that they all know each other and know one another's place, "the more important customers, who drank spirits and sat nearest the fire", "the beer-drinkers, chiefly men in fustian jackets and smock-frocks". She also gives them the well known farmers accent as well "Some folks 'ud say that was a fine beast you druv in yesterday, Bob?'' All this creates the image of a close community who don't like change and where small changes happen they have an effect on Ravaloe's conversation "Every one of Mr. Macey's audience had heard this story many times, but it was listened to as if it had been a favourite tune, and at certain points the puffing of the pipes was momentarily suspended". ...read more.


The community of Lantern Yard is united by religious faith, and Ravaloe is likewise introduced as a place in which people share the same set of superstitious beliefs. When Silas loses his faith, he is isolated from any sort of larger community. Silas' regained faith differs from his former Lantern Yard faith in significant ways. His former faith was based first and mostly on the idea of God. When he is unjustly charged with murder, he does nothing to defend himself, trusting in a just God to clear his name. The faith Silas regains through Eppie is different in that it is not even explicitly Christian. Silas does not mention God in the same way he did in Lantern Yard, but bases his faith on the strength of his and Eppie's commitment to each other. In his words, "since ... I've come to love her ... I've had light enough to trusten by; and now she says she'll never leave me, I think I shall trusten till I die." ...read more.


When Godfrey dreams of a life with Nancy, he sees himself "with all his happiness centred on his own hearth, while Nancy would smile on him as he played with the children." Even in a public place such as the Rainbow, the villagers' importance is measured by how close they sit to the fire. Initially, Silas shares his hearth with no one, at least not intentionally. However, the two intruders who forever change Silas' life, first Dunsey and then Eppie, both drawn in by Silas' glowing fire. Silas' cottage can never be entirely separate from the outside world, and the light of his fire attracts both misfortune and redemption. In the end, it is Silas' hearth that feels the warmth of family, while Godfrey's is childless. Silas Marner is a product of its time because it represents things like religion, loss and regaining of faith, also the industrial revolution. It shows life in the 18th century very specifically with typical villagers used and suspicions to create a very imaginative picture of who, what, and where is going on. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE George Eliot section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE George Eliot essays

  1. George Elliot- How sympathy is created for Silas Marner the eponymous character.

    He had lost his faith in humanity and God because they had both let him down; this is when the reader really begins to understand him and feels sympathy for him. Marner saved lots of Gold and silver over the years working in Raveloe he got paid mainly in gold

  2. Novelists in the nineteenth century believed not only in entertaining their readers, but also ...

    in, this was a 'course as dark and dubious as a balloon journey' but shows that despite what has happened to him, Silas is still quite strong as he was brave enough to take this journey. Silas travelled to a 'far off country' called Raveloe with fresh ideas on life itself.

  1. "Analyse the representation of Multicultural Britain in the films Bend It Like Beckham and ...

    Another reason could be to do with them mixing between other cultures; it is generally thought of as uncool to be religious. Ironically the baby of the family Saj, who has not been circumcised, gets found out outside the mosque when peeing on a wall.

  2. EAST IS EAST Explore how the conflicts and tension in the play are dramatically ...

    - (Act 2, Scene 4) This is a dramatic part of the scene as Abdul has vented his feelings about his behaviour all in one powerful release. The relevance of the music is important as it is background music which can clearly be heard as both Abdul and Tariq are silent, showing that it is a reminder of their culture and the rising tensions.

  1. Contrast And Compare The Three Fathers In Silas Marner. What Does This Examination Of ...

    daughter, he was infact quite pleased inside that things had worked out for his betterment. For she says 'Godfrey Cass's cheek an eye were brighter than ever now. He was so undivided in his aims, that he seemed like a man of firmness.

  2. 'Duty is peremptory and absolute', How far would you say that duty was important ...

    He is an inconsistent man who fails to take action when he should be taking action, and then blames everyone else. He is an example of a very bad father, as he neglects his sons and then becomes angry at their actions.

  1. They do the Poet in Different Voices

    It is to be especially noted that even now critics and biographers have different ideas as to the full extent of her involvement. The script takes the basic form of a play within a play as Vivienne directs her version of the three poems.

  2. The Gift of Children in "Silas Marner". What does the novel have to say ...

    Squire Cass failed as a father because there is no trust in the relationship between Dunstan and Godfrey and their father. They feel they cannot tell him about how Dunstan lost the rent money because of fear of what he?d do.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work