Gimpel the Fool Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 30 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Gimpel the Fool.
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Faith

Faith is one of the primary themes in "Gimpel the Fool." Despite being teased and deceived mercilessly by the other villagers as well as by his wife Elka, Gimpel maintains his faith in life, in others, and in God. When Elka continues to nag and bully him, Gimpel simply says, "I'm the type that bears it and says nothing. What's one to do? Shoulders are from God, and burdens too." Gimpel has consciously decided to choose faith over skepticism; through his faith he finds consolation and peace.

Knowledge and Ignorance

Although Gimpel is presented as a fool, Singer suggests through his telling of the events of the story that Gimpel actually possesses a special wisdom. It is not that he simply believes the outrageous things the villagers tell him, but rather, that he chooses to do so. For example, when the villagers tell Gimpel that his father and...

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This section contains 454 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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Short Stories for Students
Gimpel the Fool from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.