Good as Gold Summary
Joseph Heller

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Good as Gold Summary

The multiple meanings of Heller's tide reveal his thematic concerns. How good is Bruce Gold, the academician who holds contempt for his colleagues and students alike, the purveyor of catchy verbiage without any substance, the husband of the long-suffering Belle who has not one—but two mistresses, the Jew embarrassed by his family and willing to be "unnamed" to achieve power? In many respects the novel is like a morality play in which Washington's call to a possible cabinet position takes on overtones of a Satanic temptation for Gold to deny his ethnic and familial heritage. In fact, Heller has suggested such a connection in clarifying the moral themes of his third novel: "What is being ridiculed, deplored by me if not by my characters, is a moral corruption, a disavowal of responsibilities, a substitution of vanity, folly where other people's lives are concerned."

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