Study Guide

Benia in The Red Tent

By Anita Diamant


The Soul of Kindness

We don't get to see much of Benia, Dinah's second husband. But from what we do get, we can tell that Benia is an angel. Metaphorically speaking, that is. Not only does he travel across Egypt to find Dinah, but he also treats her with nothing but kindness and love when they finally marry. As Dinah herself reminds us, "I had been right to trust Benia, who was the soul of kindness" (3.3.85).

Dinah trusts many people throughout her life, and not all are actually worthy of that trust. But Benia is different—he does nothing to hurt Dinah, and stands as an entirely benevolent character. Don't think that all the men in this novel are bad boys; Benia's one of the good ones.