The Golden House: A Novel Themes & Motifs

This Study Guide consists of approximately 54 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Golden House.
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Destructive Families

The turmoil of the Golden family dramatizes how families can destroy themselves. By choosing Roman names for themselves, the Goldens associate themselves with the destructive Roman emperors. Petya says that the families of "the twelve Ceasars" suffered from "incest, matricide, poisonings, epilepsy, dead babies, the stench of evil..." (46). Many of these destructive actions plague the Goldens throughout the novel: the Golden brothers hate Vasilia, recalling matricide; Vasilia tries to poison Nero; and all of the Golden brothers die, recalling the "dead babies" of the Caesars. In this way, the novel implies that the Golden family, by choosing to associate themselves with the Romans, in some way set themselves up for their destructive endings. The implication is embodied through the death of Nero, who, like the emperor Nero, plays violin as his house or his empire burns down, demonstrating that he is some way complicit in...

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This section contains 2,124 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Golden House: A Novel Study Guide
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