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Explore the presentation of Fagin in Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

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Explore the presentation of Fagin in Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens Oliver Twist is the story of a young orphan, Oliver, and his attempts to stay good in a society that refuses to help him. Dickens shows and touches upon all the levels of society; these being the rich and poor. These levels of society give the story a theme that captures reality in the midst of nineteenth English century. As revealed in the tale, England's nineteenth century was an era of much poverty and great social problems which resulted in a society of two opposing classes: the wealthy and the poor. Fagin's den is where all the evil happens in the novel and is where he trains boys to become thieves and robbers and prostitutes meet together. Its where Oliver is brought by the Artful Dodger and where he is taught the art of pickpocketing through fun before he discovers the true purpose behind his training. ?The walls and ceilings were perfectly black with age and dirt? ?There was a deal table before the fire; upon which were a candle, stuck in a ginger bottle..and standing over them with a toasting fork in his hand was a very old shrivelled Jew?. ...read more.


“The Jew grinned; and, making a low obeisance to Oliver, took him by the hand, and hoped he should have the honour of his intimate acquaintance” The other side of Fagin is shown when Oliver wakes up in the morning and sees Fagin playing with his treasure and Fagin spots him he shows his ugly side and then after believing Oliver saying he didn't see anything he betrays his vicious nature and quickly recovers to the “merry old gentlemen”. Dickens shows Fagin's ugly side by making Fagin look as though he would have killed Oliver because of his treasure. “Speak out, boy! Quick -- quick! for your life!” “"No! No, indeed!" replied Oliver."Are you sure?" cried the Jew: with a still fiercer look than before: and a threatening attitude”. One of the tricks Dickens plays is that Oliver is very naive as he watches Fagin's actions in a lot of respect and tends to follow everything he does. This makes Fagin feel very happy and proud of himself and laughs about how naïve and innocent Oliver is as he doesn't really know what's happening. ...read more.


old cur? and also threatens him by saying ?it will be for want of breath? this shows Sikes use intimidation and violence to get what he wants. However Fagin is really the smart one as all he had to say to trigger Sikes was that she has ? she gave him a drink of laudanum? this is what makes Sikes feel like a fool and causes Nancy's death that Fagin had wanted. Dickens portrays the nineteenth century as a time when people had no feelings for each other and were really no better than animals. The last chapter about Fagin(3.14:The Jews Last Night Alive) shows how different Fagin was from the rest of the society and even from the entire human race. He's in a crowded courtroom, and is surrounded ?by a firmament all bright with beaming eyes?(52.1). The crowd of people is reduced to this one feature: their ?eyes?(the narrator doesn't describe any other part of their body in that paragraph), so Fagin is made into a spectacle and his own sense of individual identity is totally destroyed by their ?inquisitive and eager eyes?. ...read more.

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