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

The theme of an outsider is an important one in George Eliot's 'Silas Marner'.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

SILAS MARNER In this essay I will be concentrating on the theme of an outsider. The theme of an outsider is an important one in George Eliot's 'Silas Marner' because it is a story about a man who is alienated from his community because he is different, a social misfit "In that far-off time superstition clung easily round every person or thing that was at all wanted". An outsider is defined as someone who is excluded or doesn't mix with people from their society/community. The novel was set in 1805 (Pre-Industrial Revolution) in Raveloe, a small village in rural England. Eliot began writing Silas Marner in autumn 1860 and was published in 1861. There were many changes made during this period, which include: attitudes in work, religion and government, population, rise in industrial towns and more factories being created. It is clear from the social structure of the novel, that whist Eliot was writing he was greatly influenced by pre-industrial events in his current day England. Today people are more urbanised, and live in towns rather than villages. George Eliot was the pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans, which she changed because it was seen as a male profession and she had a fear of being rejected. ...read more.

Middle

Silas follows the route of loneliness and misfortune, but ends up leading a life of happiness, while Godfrey Cass goes in the opposite direction, going from having a good life with opportunities to a life of woe. The reason for Eliot's two very different, but similar in changes in life are because she wanted to give people an idea of how things can go from bad to good and vice versa. She also wanted people to be aware of changes happening around them that could relate to the novel. Part one focuses on how Silas is accepted into the community and part 2 shows how he moves on in life with his new adopted daughter Eppie. Silas Marner is written in third person omniscient narrative (all-seeing/all-knowing narrator). This method is effective because the novel is written in detail with thorough character analysis so we, as readers know exactly what is going on. The narrator knows the different events that are happening all at once so the reader gets a better understanding of the different sides of life. Silas is portrayed as an outsider because he is a solitary linen weaver, which is seen as an odd profession and he is subject to occasional cataleptic fits which people in his community look upon as being out of the ordinary and start to speculate. ...read more.

Conclusion

Such a faith is inextricably linked to the bonds of community. As Dolly indicates, Silas's faith is based on helping others and trusting others to do the same in return. The theme of change also comes up in the novel, which by Eliot's view is the creation of a multitude of things. Eliot's main setting is a community of people with very old-fashioned beliefs where change doesn't occur often. She shows how the community jointly come to accept Silas. He isn't accepted in the beginning, but as time goes on they gradually do. Eliot shows how people can change over time, Silas from being lonely to having Eppie to look after. Eliot also shows how Silas's views on how he perceives people and his beliefs change over time. The theme of affection is important because Eliot expresses this through her characters, especially the love for Eppie from Silas and how he grows to love her as if she were his own child. Silas is only Eppie's adoptive father not biologically linked, but he cares for her just the same and their relationship grows over time. The relationship between Eppie and Silas also comes into this because it links with the theme of change. Eppie has opened a whole new way of life for Silas and it makes him realise how important some things in life are. ...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. How does Eliot create sympathy for Marner in chapters 1 & 2? Why is ...

    Weaving would have been solitary work using a loom, which would have been a strange, foreign machine outside the industrial-revolution time towns and cities. This helps him immediately be ostracised and explains the immediate difficulty in socialising between the society of Raveloe and Marner, the now known local weirdo.

  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. The History and Literary Context of Silas Marner.

    The main method of transport for the working class was walking. People thought nothing of walking ten miles or so to the neighbouring village and then walking back again in time for dinner. For the middle class, like the doctor, going by horseback was possible as they could afford it,

  2. How does George Eliot portray the changes of the character Silas Marner?

    The reader is reminded of Silas Marner's innocent side when he says 'Till anybody shows they've a right to take her away from me', 'The mother's dead, and I reckon it's got no father.' George Eliot creates shock in the readers when Marner says this by using dramatic irony.

  1. Consider how the character of Silas Marner has changed though out the novel

    When Silas found Eppie though he said that he was, "...finding his treasure again" this shows that Silas now sees Eppie as his treasure or gold. In the Victorian times, it was looked upon that parents should punish their children, so this is why Elliot is making such a big thing out of Silas not wanting to punish Eppie.

  2. Discuss how Silas Marner changes in the novel Silas Marner by George Eliot.

    'There is no just God that governs the earth righteously, but a God of lies, that bears witness against the innocent.' This reflects George Eliot's feelings towards religion and God, as she did not believe in either.

  1. In this essay I aim to discuss the portrayal of Silas Marner in chapters ...

    In chapter 1 and 2 George Elliot gave a big hint that Silas Marner would not remain like this throughout the story, he would change as well as his priorities in life, "But while opinion concerning him had remained nearly stationary and his daily habits had presented scarcely any visible

  2. How does George Eliot use Setting in Silas Marner?

    The fact that the stone cottage is now a nest illustrates that the cottage has also become a home and not just a cottage. Pathetic fallacy is used in Silas Marner to create atmosphere and prepare the reader for particular events in the plot.

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