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Charles Dickens describes 'A Christmas Carol' as'a ghost story for Christmas' - In what ways can the novel be considered a ghost story and why is it an appropriate tale for Christmas?

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Charles Dickens describes 'A Christmas Carol' as 'a ghost story for Christmas'. In what ways can the novel be considered a ghost story and why is it an appropriate tale for Christmas? When people read or watch a ghost story, they have certain expectations of it. People would usually expect the story to be scary, have an eerie feel, and have appropriate, creepy settings such as a graveyard or derelict house. Most ghost stories use darkness to create the right atmosphere. There is usually a wide range of characters such as a hero/heroin, a damsel in distress or someone in danger, a victim, horrible and creepy characters that maybe outcasts and most obviously a ghost. People expect the story to have a scary opening, that draws them in into the story making them want to read on, but that doesn't give anything away. The opening often gives some background information on the characters. There is quite often a murder or disappearance to be investigated. Most ghost stories have a closed ending where the mystery is solved or the ghost is disposed of. Fear, suspense and foreshadowing are important features in the plot of a ghost story. All of these factors usually crop up in a typical ghost story. Older ghost stories tend to be text based where as newer ones can be found in other media, such as films. Many films and television series of ghost stories have been produced. The more recent ones tend to drift away from the criteria of a typical ghost story by combining with other genres, where as the older stories seem to follow the expected features of a ghost story much more closely. ...read more.


Scrooge sees himself as a child when he is the only one not enjoying Christmas. The ghost shows Scrooge a scene of Christmas day that he spent with a woman he was engaged to. He threw away his relationship because he was obsessed with money and he's " not who he once was." Scrooge doesn't like the ghost of Christmas past because it reminds him of events that he had tried to erase from his memory. The second spirit Scrooge encounters is not typical of a ghost story. The second spirit is the Ghost of Christmas Present. He is a jolly character with "it's sparkling eye, it's open hand, it's cheery voice, and it's unconstrained demeanour and will." He tells the ghost that he can "conduct him where he will. For last night, he went forth on compulsion, and he learnt a lesson, which is working now. So if he has aught to teach him, let him profit by it." The ghost of Christmas present takes Scrooge to see other people that are less fortunate than himself but still manage to be jolly and enjoy what they have at Christmas time. The spirit takes Scrooge to the house of Bob Cratchit, Scrooges clerk. Scrooge pays Bob a very low salary but the Cratchit family still manage to enjoy Christmas and make the most of what they do have even though they have a sick son, Tiny Tim, who will most likely die. Scrooge looks at the family, and becomes attached to Tiny Tim, and the fact that he is so ill has a huge effect on Scrooge. ...read more.


The lesson is, if you have a lot of something that you don't need all of, then you should share what you have with others that need it more than you do. If you a choose to be selfish and not share what you have it will come back on you and even though you have it all you will still be miserable and not be accepted. Scrooge had a lot of money but he would not share a penny with those who were less fortunate than him, the three spirits open his eyes to what he is doing and he realises that he must share his fortune. He becomes a happy, jolly person who is liked by all! The story is an appropriate tale for Christmas because it shows that Christmas is a time for friends and family to come together and for people to be kind and generous to others. The moral of the story is also suitable for Christmas because it shows that the Christmas spirit should be kept up throughout the Whole year and not just for one day. The story tells us that we should be kind and generous to others all year round. I think that 'A Christmas Carol' is an appropriate tale to tell at Christmas time but is the kind of story that can be read at any time of year. It gets an important message across to the reader that if kindness and generosity is shown to others it will be shown back in return. It also shows that people can change, but they may need to be shown why they need to change, as they can't see it themselves. It shows that kindness does exist, and people should show it, not only at Christmas but all year round. ...read more.

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