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Compare Chapter 1 of Great Expectations, in which Pip first meets the convict, with Chapter 39, when the convict returns

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Compare Chapter 1 of Great Expectations, in which Pip first meets the convict, with Chapter 39, when the convict returns. Great Expectations is told from Pips point of view. The narrator who tells the story is the grown up Pip, remembering his childhood. Charles Dickens manages to show the reader what Pip felt like as a young child at the same time as letting us know how Pip the grown up narrator feels towards his younger self. In chapter one of Great Expectations, the reader sees Pip as a young boy visiting his parents graves. Pip is an orphan and although he has a big sister, he does not get the motherly affection he is supposed to in life. Pip is drawn into the place where his parents are buried as stated, 'my fancies regarding what they were like were unreasonably derived from their tombstones,' (chapter 1). This quote shows how much he misses parental affection that his sister, Mrs. Joe cannot give him although she looks after him. Pip also appears to be naive and he is lonely as a little boy because he does not have friends. In the first chapter, we also notice how helpless Pip is, by saying this I mean that his sister is always beating him whenever he returns home from the church late at night. Pip's views are of no matter to his sister as he ends up keeping his point of view to himself; as a result, Pip suppresses his feelings deep inside him. The reader will find him a little submissive for a child his age. The convict has escaped from prison and is hiding in the graveyard where Pip is. ...read more.


When the weather is dark and stormy, trouble is usually brewing, the weather adds a sense of mystery to the place, moreover, for a little boy like Pip, the kind of 'raw afternoon' in the graveyard does not suit him because it gives the impression of a cold atmosphere, the kind that hurts. The settings in chapter 39 are quite similar to the opening chapter of Great Expectations. In chapter 39, we are taken to Pip's new house near the river in London, it is a very horrible night, as the rain was hitting hard and the storm was picking up furthermore streets were covered in mud: "It was wretched weather; stormy and wet, stormy and wet; and mud, mud, mud, deep in all the streets." Firstly the 'wretched weather' gives the impression of something unpleasant going to happen furthermore the repetition of the word 'stormy' creates an impression of a threat. Trees had been torn up and windmills had their sails stripped off, it was good not to be outside:'Day after day, a vast heavy veil had been driving over London from the East, and it drove still, as if in the East there were an Eternity of cloud and wind. So furious had been the gusts, that high buildings in town had had the lead stripped off their roofs'. The word heavy veil suggests that there is something to be concealed. Pip is in his living room reading and the smoke from the fire being blown back into the room because of the wind: Occasionally, the smoke came rolling down the chimney as though it could not bear to go out into such a night'. ...read more.


To be a real gentlemen, you have to walk the walk and nut just talk the talk. Charles Dickens also tells us about the social class system in the nineteenth century.Throughout the novel, social class provides an arbitrary, external standard of value by which the characters (particularly Pip) judge one another. Pip was able to become a gentlemen not through intelligence but through study and money and Charles Dickens is, In my opinions, making an ironic statement that intelligence and money will only get you so far, you have to have a conscious desire not just to rise above your origins but also to forget all about them. In Great Expectations, Pip had neglected Joe and his origins when he went to London, but really I do not think he thought about them. Charles Dickens also criticises the Victorian society using the character of Magwitch. Pip asks Magwitch what he was brought up to be, and he answers "A varmint, dear boy." (Chapter 40) Through this we can see the way that young people brought up in a life surrounded by crime, have no chance of becoming anything else. Magwitch's crime was not particularly severe - not severe enough to warrant the other terrible punishment of being forced to work in a chain gang - chapter 42 tells us that he was transported for "putting stolen notes into circulation." His accomplice, Compeyson, appeared more wealthy and well to do and received a much lesser sentence, through this Dickens highlights the injustice of the social class system. In conclusion, I think the moral theme of Great Expectations is simply: affection, loyalty, and conscience are more important than social advancement, wealth, and class. Also I think Charles Dickens wanted us to remember where are roots are and who are true family and friends are. ...read more.

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