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Explore Dickens use of language focusing on the settings in great expectations consider how he uses settings to develop our understanding of The Characters, The life and times of Victorian England.

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Introduction

Explore Dickens use of language focusing on the settings in great expectations consider how he uses settings to develop our understanding of The Characters, The life and times of Victorian England. Background to Charles Dickens Charles Dickens the author of 'Great Expectations' was born in 1812 in Portsmouth; he was the second child of six. His father was a clerk in the Navy pay office; he was often in debt and ended up in Marshabea prison. Charles was lucky enough in such difficult circumstances to have a few years of schooling before he was sent to work in a friend of the family. Charles worked in this Factory for seven shillings a week. It seems that it was from this background that Dickens drew from for most of his writings. It is evident that real people he had met during his life inspired the plots and characters in his novels. As Charles family wealth increased he again went back to school after finishing school he started work as a solicitors clerk, he then progressed as a court reporter it was at this stage in his life that he started supplementing his income by writing. ...read more.

Middle

Pip is terrified and informs the convict that his Mother is nearby; the convict reacts by suddenly starting to run away from Pip, then he stops and looks over his shoulder realising there is nobody there he continue his aggressive line of questioning. The language that Dickens uses to describe the scene of the graveyard creates a bleak and eerie atmosphere to the setting; it is very bleak and depressing the way things are depicted. The convicts appearance is described in great detail, his poor and rough demeanour are emphasised over and over again using different examples of the way he has been afflicted by nettles, stones flints etc. Also Dickens uses lots of descriptive words to really put across the state of the man and to invoke a strong sense of his appearance. Dickens writes the novel in the third person which makes the reader picture what is occurring vividly, and this relates to events that Dickens experienced in his own childhood. Also he described the setting of the graveyard as a terrifying place, evoking the reader to have a real sense of tension. ...read more.

Conclusion

Pip begins to realise the dull residence of Rochester, is not enough to satisfy his urge to acquire a further knowledge and wisdom, in order to catapult him into a higher status in society. Great Expectations is set in early Victorian England, this was a time of great social change. The prior Industrial Revolution had transformed the social climate, enabling capitalists and manufactures to become wealthy creating an even more distinct class society. Although social class was not as influenced by a person's ancestry, the division between the rich and poor remained very wide. The bustling city of London was in great contrast to rural England which was sparsely populated. Lots of people migrated from the country to the city in search of greater wealth. Throughout England the manners of the upper-class were very uptight and pompous; gentlemen and ladies were expected to have good education and to behave appropriately in public. This behaviour was prominent into Dickens novel of Great Expectation. Pip suddenly rose from being a country labourer to a gentleman; he moved from one social extreme to the other, he had to deal with the strict rules and expectations that governed Victorian England. The moral theme of Great Expectations is simple, affection, loyalty and conscience is more important than social advancement, wealth and class. . ...read more.

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