George Eliot's Silas Marner
I read books from all periods of history. I find fiction to be a truer account of history than historians. Great fiction conveys a personís feelings of their time, there are no facts or figures, statistics or empiricism, but there is honesty, and there is description of what it was like. I just finished reading Silas Marner. I am no literary scholar I canít tell you the academic significance of the book. What I can say is Eliot delves into the lives of the poor and the rural gentry of early- mid 18th century England. She makes a statement that children are more important than money, with all the intricacy that entails. I felt the characters and events were exaggerated to make it clearer to the reader. This was a thing they did in those days, because it worked and it has many obvious and subtle dimensions. The rich men were portrayed as cold hearted idiots who believed they were better than the poor because of their class. The rich women were equally repulsive but not because of their snobbery, more because of their indifference and altered state of reality, they seemed completely obsessed with being rich. The poor were portrayed as superstitious idiots who feared what they didnít understand. And then there was Silas Marner a mysterious epileptic weaver. He was the personification of the good in human nature.
† †The plot itself was woven with many layers, which finished up as complete quilt. I wonít say what happened because if you want to know itís out there. †All I would say is that it was very clever, and was drawn from a deep understanding of human beings within the warp of socio-political madness. The same can be said for any great writer. I donít believe you wake up one day and write such a tale of wisdom without first experiencing some of what happens within it. But also you canít have experienced a fiction in full, what happens here and through out all great fiction is: the real emotional experiences are implanted into the tale. It may seem like I'm a patronizing twat, but nobody ever tells you the obvious in education, and it was news to me when I found it out. People are very quick to make generalizations about writers and writing. Some stories donít need implanted emotional experience, and some do.
† † †Overall the book was subversive and fearless of the people of the time. Eliot said ďfuck youĒ to the gentry and said all humans matter, all humans feel emotion, all humans love, and riches are really nothing when compared to joy of being alive. She said a lot more than that but that is what I chose to highlight.