Silas Marner

by: George Eliot

Suggested Essay Topics

1. Is there a difference between superstition and religion in the novel? If so, what is the difference?

2. Discuss the importance of labor in the novel.

3. How does social class function in the novel?

4. Why does Silas wish to visit Lantern Yard again? What does his visit accomplish?

5. Compare Nancy’s and Dolly’s systems of belief.

6. Eliot sets her novel in the recent, but nonetheless irretrievable, past. In what ways does she foreshadow the end of the world she describes?

7. The novel is set up as two parallel narratives that intersect three times. How do these meetings show a progression in Silas’s status as a member of the community?

8. Discuss the significance of the novel’s epigraph.