George Eliot, Judaism and the Novels: Jewish Myth and Mysticism

Overview

This is the first study to argue that Jewish Mysticism influenced not only her Jewish novel, Daniel Deronda, but all of George Eliot's novels. The reader is left with a very different George Eliot from that assumed by most previous criticism. Though previous studies have attempted to qualify the still-dominant view that Eliot is firmly a part of the realistic tradition, this study goes further by demonstrating that a cohesive mythic structure ...

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Overview

This is the first study to argue that Jewish Mysticism influenced not only her Jewish novel, Daniel Deronda, but all of George Eliot's novels. The reader is left with a very different George Eliot from that assumed by most previous criticism. Though previous studies have attempted to qualify the still-dominant view that Eliot is firmly a part of the realistic tradition, this study goes further by demonstrating that a cohesive mythic structure with its basis in Jewish mysticism is identifiable in her fiction.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...the authors offer much that is provocative, and students and scholars of Eliot will find their book worth pondering " —Choice
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780333963814
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 3/28/2002
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 228
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

Saleel Nurbhai is a Lecturer in English Literature at St Martin's College, Lancaster.

K.M. Newton is Professor of English at the University of Dundee.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Jewish Myth, Mysticism and George Eliot's Fiction
• George Eliot and Kabbalism: Historical and Literary Context
• Kabbalistic Philosophy and the Novels
• From Formless Matter to Matter with Form
• The Relationship between Creator and Creature
• Ideals of Perfection
• Science, Pseudo-Science and Transgression
• Investing Form with Essence
• Homelessness and Speechlessness
• The Messianic Potential
• Conclusion: Social Critique, Education, Allegory

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