Gimpel The Fool

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Short Story Response Essay Gimpel the Fool What constitutes for one to be a fool? According to the Oxford American dictionary, a fool is, " A person who acts unwisely … one who lacks good sense or judgment." Webster's concise dictionary defines the transitive verb of fool as "to deceive or to tease [another]." The protagonist Gimpel in Isaac Bashevis Singer's short story, "Gimpel the fool" is portrayed as the stereotypical fool. Although Gimpel may be considered a fool, as he is the victim of the countless pranks and deceit of the townspeople, it is argued however, that he is not a fool. In the story, Gimpel's actions proves to supercede the values of the common ways by being true to himself and eventually becoming the wise old man in the end. Through In the beginning, Gimpel introduces himself as the fool but clarifies that he does not agree with it.

. He tells of his past experiences of the jokes and taunts played on him. Gimpel knew that their tricks were lies but he carried on with what they asked and said. He simply takes things into heart. Gimpel asks rhetorically, " What did my foolishness consist of? I was easy to take in." (DiYanni, 281) He explains that it is easy to take advantage of him but is that what makes him a fool? No. He may be the target of harassment and ridicule, but he knows his capacity to react and chooses to be humble. Gimpel explains, " I was no weakling. If I had slapped someone he'd see all the way to Crawcow. But I'm really not a slugger by nature. I think to myself: Let it pass. So they take advantage of me." (DiYanni, 282) Gimpel is true to himself and knows his capabilities...