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Gimple the Fool - A Deeper Look

Uploaded by Quest4Glory on Jul 05, 2004

A deeper look at "Gimple the Fool"

At one time or another, everyone, in their life, has looked down upon someone because that someone isn't as rich, attractive, or even as intelligent as most people. People do this without any regard to the people's feeling, and without ever imagining what it is like to be in that person's shoes. In Isaac Bashevis Singer's "Gimpel the Fool", a man named Gimpel was harassed and teased because of the fact he was gullible, or so the people believed. The townspeople looked at Gimpel as if he was a fool, which leads to them taking advantage of him, but overall, Gimpel wasn't as foolish as the people had him out to be.

Was Gimpel really a fool? The townspeople sure thought so. The story opens up with Gimpel saying he's a fool but not really agreeing with the statement. Gimpel gives his own reason when he says, "What did my foolishness consist of? I was easy to take in" (Singer 1071). He says this meaning that anything that someone says to him he believes to be the truth, no matter how outlandish it may be. His life was full of lies that people told him and it made no difference how many times he was made a fool, he still let on that he believed them. One example, and the one where he vows never to be taken in again, is when a student came by his bakery and yelled to him that the Messiah has come. They claimed his parents were standing at their graves waiting for him to come and Gimpel, although not believing a bit of it, put on his wool vest and went to see for himself. The only thing that he found was the realization that he is the butt of another joke, but the worst is still to come.

After a lifetime of torment, the townsfolk thought up an elaborate scheme to top all schemes. They talked Gimpel into marrying the town's whore and convincing him that if he didn't marry her then the rabbi would fine him for giving her a bad name. Gimpel, with the thought, "They're set on making me their butt. But when you're married the husband's the master, and if that's all right with her it's agreeable to me too", set out to fetch his wife (Singer 1072). Although Gimpel faced tricks everyday, this one...

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Uploaded by:   Quest4Glory

Date:   07/05/2004

Category:   Literature

Length:   4 pages (862 words)

Views:   14475

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