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

"Silas Marner is the story of a lost soul who finds redemption." Explain how this comment might apply to George Eliot's novel.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

"Silas Marner is the story of a lost soul who finds redemption." Explain how this comment might apply to George Eliot's novel. The story of Silas Marner is focused on following the life of Silas Marner, the lonely weaver, and tracking the various events which befall him. This story was set in the 19th Century, and so as a result, the revolutionary scientific ideas which have shaped the world today had not yet set into society, especially not in the rural areas in which the story of Silas Marner's life takes place. Therefore, religious ideals are what binds the community together, and this faith in religion is what makes Silas a part of the community in the beginning of his story at Lantern Yard. However, when he is framed and judged guilty over murdering the senior deacon of the church for his money, he is not only cast out of the social community, but also he loses his faith in religion. Silas Marner may be called a "lost soul" due to the fact that prior to his loss of faith, the only thing he had in his life was the church and his faith, i.e. ...read more.

Middle

George Eliot asks the reader a rhetorical question "Have not men, shut up in solitary imprisonment, found an interest in marking the moments by straight strokes of a certain length on the wall, until the growth of the sum of straight strokes, arranged in triangles, has become a mastering purpose?" The reference to solitary imprisonment refers to just how isolated Silas is from the Raveloe community; this quotation also comments on how Silas became addicted to money just as a man in prison becomes addicted to markings on walls; there was nothing else for Silas to do but to weave on his loom, and the money he collected from this practice was what satisfied his lack of purpose. However, it is in Silas' power to love that he finds redemption. From the story, one can deduce that Silas is a kind-hearted person, i.e. At the beginning of the story, he can see nothing but goodness in his friend William Dane, despite the obvious treachery on William's part. When Eppie, the child of Godfrey Cass (the son of the squire) and Molly Farren (who had recently died due to hypothermia) wandered into Silas' house during one of his cataleptic fits, the first thing he sees when he looks at the child ...read more.

Conclusion

However, when Godfrey Cass and Nancy, his wife, come to Silas' house to tell him that Eppie is in fact Godfrey's daughter and that he wants her back by birthright since Godfrey and Nancy cannot have children, Silas is deeply shocked, so Eppie herself defends Silas " Thank you ma'am - thank you, sir. But I can't leave my father, nor own anybody nearer than him." This shows how close Eppie is to Silas, because she would rather stay with Silas than live with her real father and be the daughter of the Squire. We can see now that Silas has at last found redemption in the love of Eppie, a love which his golden guineas could not provide; for through his love for Eppie, Silas finally establishes links with the rest of his community, e.g. when he goes to find clothing for Eppie as a baby, he asks Dolly Winthrop and gives her half a guinea, but instead, she says "There's no call to buy, no more nor a pair o' shoes; for I've got the little petticoats as Aaron wore five years ago..." Already, Dolly has offered Silas the clothes that her son Aaron wore when he was a baby instead of him paying for them. This is an example of Silas forging social links with the rest of Raveloe. ...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. What does the novel Silas Marner have to say about the relationship between parents ...

    show his evil nature: "I might tell the squire how his handsome son was married to That nice young woman, Molly Farran." The squire is also weak and is enraged easily. "The Squire's life was quite as idle as his son's." And he blames Godrey for all the family's misfortunes.

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

    It is a fact that the Squire is a man with quick temper and lack of understanding. We learn this from a quote at the end of Chapter eight. It states that "The old Squire was an implacable man: he made resolutions in violent anger, but he was not to

  1. Trace the character of Silas Marner throughout the novel and explain the ideas that ...

    He also takes her soaking shoes off her and dries her feet by the fire. He has immediately began taking care of this child and is rapidly becoming very attached to it. He soon finds the child's mother lying "dead" in the snow and being the caring man that he is he instantly sets off to get help.

  2. Discuss The Importance of Loneliness in the Novel Silas Marner by George Eliot

    They have no love in their house, and no female figure before Nancy. This is significant as it shows how the females are a way of overcoming loneliness for the men in Raveloe. We see this in Dolly Winthrop, Eppie, Nancy and the possibly late Mrs.

  1. Describe how the character of Silas Marner is presented in the novel and explain ...

    Jem Rodney sees Marner go into an epileptic fit. At this time, the villagers of Raveloe did not think it was an illness but his soul leaving his body to the devil and coming back again. The villagers would think that Marner was either the devil in disguise or some sort of other being with magical powers.

  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. Examine The Treatment Of Alienation And Prejudice In George Eliot’s ‘Silas Marner’ and Harper ...

    either on the trial itself or on the matters arising from the trial. Arthur, nicknamed "Boo" Radley, the younger son, is sacrificed to the cold hearts and family pride of his parents and elder brother. Arthur Radley as Miss Maudie remembers him, was once a pleasant boy who always "Spoke as nicely as he knew how."

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

    Eliot went on to write about the rural life she remembered from childhood in Warwickshire about fond memories, the simplicity of living, and the honest approach to life, which went against the strict Christian society. This lifestyle of going against the normal can be grasped from the life of Silas in ?Silas Marner?.

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