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A Christmas Carol

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Discuss Charles Dickens' use of Ebenezer Scrooge in 'A Christmas Carol' Charles Dickens was brought up in Victorian England. The Victorian era had a major effect on Britain. As it was the times of the industrial revolution, but apart from this, it was a time or great poverty. Many poor people, including children, and also criminals, if not jailed had to work long and hard in workhouse. When Charles Dickens was twelve, he was considered old enough to go to work. He got a job in Warrens boot blacking factory, he worked ten hours a day to help provide for his family. Growing up in a poor family environment, Dickens could see the social injustices inflicted, in the Victorian era. When he began to write, Dickens pointed out these flaws and often criticized them in his books, In the opening pages of a Christmas carol, straight away Dickens gets the audiences' minds thinking, as he describes Scrooge, by making the sounds go into rhythm when reading, as they all end in the same -ing sound. For example 'A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping. Clutching, covetous old sinner'. These words make you feel an automatic distance from the audience towards Scrooge, as Dickens paints a picture of a truly awful man in your mind. Dickens is setting up the book here, and exaggerates his points and descriptions, but this is a clever device used by Dickers, as he describes Scrooge as a horrible man at first, so that later in the book the change of Scrooge is more powerful. ...read more.


It shows us that your upbringing has a very powerful effect on your adult life. Dickens here is showing us how Victorian society were not as worried about children having a good upbringing, as they sent them to work very early and cared little about their lives. 'Broken fortunes'is used by Dickens to show us that at some point in his childhood, fortunes in his family have been lost, this could explain the reason that Scrooge is very greedy. When we are shown Scrooges childhood we are shown a young girl and boy. Which is Scrooge and his sister, Fan, when they were younger. It is the first time we see Scrooge showing genuine love, he talks to her in a very kind and caring way. She also shows the affection back. For example ' We're to be together all the Christmas long, and have the merriest time in all the world'. This shows how Christmas was a happy time for Scrooge when he was with his sister. Dickens uses the love her has for his sister as a device, to show that Scrooge wasn't always horrible, though the contrast between Scrooge's usual language and how he is speaking when he is with his sister is typical of Dickens, as he uses large contrasts, which make his points obvious to the audience, here it helps the audience see a different side to Scrooge that they could relate too. ...read more.


The men talk in a very cold and harsh way about the man. 'It's likely to be a very cheap funeral'. This shows that even after his death, people still remember Scrooge for being tight with his money. Dickens here uses very harsh words, at describing how people felt about Scrooge, and it makes you feel sorry for Scrooge, but at the same time can't help but think he brought it on himself. Though when it is revealed to Scrooge that he is the dead man, Scrooge really shows emotion for the first time, and he has seen the error of his ways. He begs the spirit to help him and promises he will change. This is a very dramatic moment in the book, and Dickens makes it stand out by straight away showing a contrast in how Scrooge has changed, as we are shown him to be more generous and caring. Dickens here is trying to tell the Victorian society that change is not inevitable, and I think he wanted his audience to realise this, and he could change society. I think that a Christmas carol still is relevant today as it was in the Victorians era. As it shows how to love and share at Christmas time. But I think the impact Dickens was aiming for would have worked in 1843, as that's when poverty was not spoken about. But now I don't think that strong message is really needed. By Ariana Gollogly ...read more.

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