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Compare the roles of institutions in “A Kestrel for a Knave” and the works of Dickens

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Compare the roles of institutions in "A Kestrel for a Knave" and the works of Dickens Dickens and Hines use writing techniques to portray their institutions as impoverished and brutal places. Dickens is especially good at this. He can bring places to life with similes and metaphors. Dickens and Hines have added a fiery, tyrannical character in the shape of Mr Gradgrind, who every one fears and Mr Gryce. Both of whom are headmasters. At the beginning of "Hard Times" Dickens disguises his characters by not giving them names, he does this to draw the reader into the novel. "The Speaker and the schoolmaster, and the third grown person present" Both of the novels, although written 100 years apart show very little change in the schooling the children received. ...read more.


Both authors show that the children in their books have no prospects. They leave school only knowing enough to get them into a factory or coal mine. Hines has injected a positive influence into "A Kestrel for a Knave" in the shape of Mr Farthing, Billy's Teacher. Mr Farthing is a kind and gentle man a far cry from the harsh environment in which Billy lives. There is a profound lack of anything worth living for in Hard Times. This is because all of the children in the school in "Hard Times" are just going to end there life's in a pit or factory, again this is because society in those days looked upon the working class as workers so this is were they where destined to be. ...read more.


The schools were run like business. Sometimes the head teachers had deals with factories to send there school leavers to their factories or down their mines. Dickens describes Coketown with metaphors of animals this is I think to show that the inhabitants of Coketown were only animals, this also adds to the primitive nature of the town. Coke town is primitive because everybody fights for the best jobs and positions in the town. Also the way that Dickens describes the buildings as animals makes this scene primitive. Mr Gradgrind believes heavily in Utilitarianism. This concept originally the brainchild of Jeremy Bentham is made a mockery of by Dickens in Hard Times, with his ironic quotes and lines. Dickens and Hines both use institutions in their novels to illustrate the poverty of the industrial town. The reader is able to sympathise with the characters in these novels through the ways that the two authors write. ...read more.

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