By S. Nurbhai, K. Newton

ISBN-10: 0230288537

ISBN-13: 9780230288539

ISBN-10: 1349427713

ISBN-13: 9781349427710

This is often the 1st examine to argue that Jewish Mysticism inspired all Eliot's novels and never simply her Jewish novel, Daniel Deronda , and leaves the reader with a really diverse George Eliot from that assumed by means of so much earlier feedback. although prior reviews have tried to qualify the still-dominant view that George Eliot is firmly as a part of the life like culture, this research is going extra by way of demonstrating cohesive mythic constitution with its foundation in Jewish mysticism is identifiable in her fiction. supplying worthwhile historical past and real information regarding the Golem and different facets of Kabbalah, this paintings will attract a person drawn to the parable of the Golem, the re-writing of Victorian tradition from a Judaic standpoint, and George Eliot reviews usually.

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Extra resources for George Eliot, Judaism and the Novels: Jewish Myth and Mysticism

Example text

Eliot, being very much at the centre of this life, undoubtedly encountered different forms of Jewish thought as a result. Emanuel Deutsch became a friend of Lewes and Eliot; his input and character feature signifcantly in Daniel Deronda. There is certainly evidence to suggest the presence of mysticism in her historical novel, for example when Maestro Vaiano is surrounded by 'yellow cabalistic fgures' (Romola, p. 137) when he marries Tito and Tessa. Dino's reliance upon dreams as a means of prophecy resembles the belief in the revelation in dreams as practised by kabbalists in Spain, who preferred such visionary mysticism, and rejected the creative elements of central European kabbalism.

9s). The isolation which results from allowing herself to be led by the demons of impulse - though they bring immediate gratifcation - makes her subsequently choose the angel of duty. She is later tempted by the desire for emotional gratifcation: choos­ ing to maintain her friendship with Philip despite Tom's disapproval, and being persuaded to go boating with Stephen Guest. But fnally her sense of duty to others proves the stronger. For Gwendolen, Godfrey and Maggie the battles between their guiding spirits re­ sult in similar conclusions: though they eventually choose the good angel, the consequence is suffering, and in Maggie's case destruction.

This division is at the root of Maggie's tragedy. It creates an internal struggle when she has to choose be­ tween duty and feeling - duty to her family, and feeling for Philip: 'Maggie's life struggles had lain almost entirely within her own soul, one shadowy army fghting another, and the slain shadows forever rising again' (Mill, p. 30s). Neither Gwendolen, Lydgate nor Maggie achieves wholeness. Deronda, who has also recognised his divided nature - he sees that there is a 'more negative spirit within him' (DD, p.

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George Eliot, Judaism and the Novels: Jewish Myth and Mysticism by S. Nurbhai, K. Newton


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