George Eliot Essays

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Adam Bede

Adam Bede published in 1859 is George Eliot’s first full-length novel but not her first fiction. At the time of its apparition, she had already published a collection of three novellas and established herself as an editor, reviewer, and essayist....

Daniel Deronda

In George Eliot's Daniel Deronda, a theme of subjugation through observation becomes a unifying tie between Jews and women, two primary categories of characters in the novel. Eliot's female characters provide a complex commentary on the...

Middlemarch

A major theme in George Eliot's novel, Middlemarch, is the role of women in the community. The female characters in the novel are, to some extent, oppressed by the social expectations that prevail in Middlemarch. Regardless of social standing,...

Middlemarch

It is only as an historian that he [the author] has the smallest locus standi. As a narrator of fictitious events, he is nowhere. --Henry James

Marriage is a great institution, but I'm not ready to be institutionalized. --May West

One of George...

Middlemarch

In George Eliot's novel Middlemarch, each character struggles to reconcile his desires with the realities of his life. This struggle often leads to an imaginative construction of reality in the "fellowship of illusion." In this novel, the...

Middlemarch

George Eliot's unwillingness to write a Positivist novel has been clearly documented in her letters. Her responses to Frederic Harrison's suggestion that "the grand features of Comte's world might be sketched in fiction in their normal...

Middlemarch

In law a husband and wife are one person, and the husband is that person...

A woman...has got to put up with the life her husband makes for her...

In Middlemarch, George Eliot offers a portrayal of a closely-knit, semi-rural community, but in fact...

Middlemarch

In George Eliot's novel Middlemarch, a successful and happy marriage between two characters involves the willingness to work together on their relationship. Each character must present a broad perspective, which includes the ability to know and...

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Middlemarch

In George Eliot’s Middlemarch, the reader is confronted with a cast of enigmatic characters, though the “character” the reader receives the most exposure to is perhaps the least easily understood, and for the simple fact that it should not be a...

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Silas Marner

Silas Marner (1861) is George Eliot’s third and arguably most perfectly constructed novel. The book skillfully combines the conflicting aspects of Realism on the one hand, and fairy tale writing on the other by dwelling on the life of the...