Adam Bede By George Eliot Summary and Analysis Book VI: Chapter 53

Summary

The following Wednesday, Adam goes to the Hall Farm expecting to see Dinah. The annual harvest supper is being held, and Adam joins the group of farmhands at the table. The author gives portraits of some of the laborers and then describes the ritual of the Harvest Song. After the song is ended, Mr. Craig gives his views on politics and the French. Mr. Poyser then tells Adam that Dinah has already left for Snowfield. An argument about the relative merits of men and women develops between Mrs. Poyser and Bartle Massey. Mrs. Poyser routs her opponent, and Bartle and Adam take their leave.

Analysis

This long chapter, like Chapter 32, is devoted primarily to the development of local color and adds almost nothing to the central story line. In the beginning of the chapter, Adam admits to himself that the good of his love for Dinah grew out of the evil of his loss of Hetty, and we learn that Dinah has gone to Snowfield, but these are the only considerations of significance for either plot or theme to appear. Besides providing local color, the chapter affords us good examples of Mrs. Poyser's and Bartle's wit. It serves to build suspense by acting as an imaginative time-lapse which delays the culmination of the relationship between Adam and Dinah. And finally, it extends the feeling of peace and harmony which Book VI as a whole creates by presenting a scene which is both humorous and nostalgic.

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