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Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Themes

Little Words, Big Ideas

Wealth

Money makes the world go round—or does it? Is wealth the gold you can bury under your bed (or stash in an offshore account), or is it a pile of warm curls under your hand? Silas Marner answer tha...

Greed

Where there's wealth, there's greed. But in Silas Marner, the greed, like the wealth, isn't quite where you expect it to be. Silas may have all the money, but, if greed means a selfish desire to ac...

Religion

Eliot evidently never got the memo re: not talking about religion, because Silas Marner is one God-rumination after another, exploring several different ways of thinking about religion. A little hi...

Isolation

Silas begins the book fully part of his Lantern-Yard group and then spends the next fifteen years living alone in a cottage, rejecting anyone's attempt to bring him into village life. If we think o...

Community

Raveloe is a stratified community. There are wealthy folks—the "parishioners," Eliot usually calls them—and there are poor (but respectable) villagers. They're tied together by a common church...

Tradition

Tradition is important to the villagers of Silas Marner's Raveloe. As an agricultural community, Eliot suggests, the village has changed little in hundreds of years. Anything new—like Silas's loo...

Change

Since Silas Marner is about rebirth and redemption, change is an important theme. But it's not always welcome. Silas can't bear the change from his childhood home to the strange new place where he...

Home

The desire for home is one of the oldest themes in Western literature (The Odyssey, anyone?). In Silas Marner, Eliot thinks a lot about what home means and what makes a home. Silas is cast out of h...
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