One thing, that I didn’t connect to anything lol, in particular that stuck out to me in reading Reuben Sach is the tremendous detail in this novel. The details make the novel so interesting and conveys a sense of realism in the piece to the reader.
On to my connection, throughout Victorian literature, we see how different societal constructs are present. We see themes of race, gender, and romance very frequently. Reuben Sachs portrays race and romance difficulties coupled with societal standards. For instance, the portrayal of class is seen by, “By his side stood a small, dark, gnomelike creature, apparently entirely overpowered by the rich, untidy garments she was wearing” (Levy 19). In comparison to class in other books we’ve read, we see in Wuthering Heights Heathcliff’s portrayal, “He is a dark-skinned gypsy in aspect, in dress and manners a gentleman, that is, as much a gentleman as many a country squire.” Societal divide is not only seen at the surface level, but at all levels in this time.
In addition, romance is an overarching theme, and coming to rise here. In Ruben Sachs, “He heard and saw nothing but the sound of Leo’s violin, and the face of Judith” (Levy 31). The mere focus on Judiths face, indicates his fascination (romance). This reminds me of particularly the focus on the face in other pieces. I remember a few instances in Wuthering Heights where there was a particular focus on faces. For instance, “a dim reflection from her own enchanting face,” and Heathcliff says, “I meditated this plan—just to have one glimpse of your face, a stare of surprise, perhaps, and pretended pleasure; afterwards settle my score with Hindley; and then prevent the law by doing execution on myself.” Further the attention to detail on the face, “Her pretty face was wan and listless; her hair uncurled: some locks hanging lankly down, and some carelessly twisted round her head” (Bronte 98). The overall fascination and detail of the face is very interesting.
I’m not sure if this is a stretch, but the idea of the focus on faces kind of struck out to me. It will definitely be something I will continue to look out for now that I have made this connection.