Silas Marner

Silas Marner and the Necessity of Human Relationships 12th Grade

Human beings do not thrive in solitude. Every hero has a supporting team, and every protagonist must maintain a close group of allies in order to ever truly succeed. George Eliot's Silas Marner furthers this idea that, although there is evil in the world, intimate human relationships are capable of creating happiness in the midst of brokenness.

As demonstrated by Silas and his isolation from the community of Raveloe, those who lack human relationships suffer great adverse effects. For instance, as stated by Durham in his article “Silas Marner and the Wordsworthian Child”, “[Silas] endures a fifteen-year period of spiritual numbness and indifference which George Eliot characterizes as a condition of rootlessness, specifically a psychic fragmentation, a loss of awareness of his personal past.” Silas refuses to acknowledge his past and the people who were involved in it. From friends who betrayed him to authority figures who banished him, it seems as if every relationship in Silas’s life has crumbled before him. He’s afraid to acknowledge that brokenness and he is even more afraid to begin new relationships in the community of Raveloe. As a result of this refusal, his life becomes dull, dark, and largely meaningless. Silas “hated...

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