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Explore the ways Dickens presents the relationship between Pip and Magwitch, with particular reference to Chapters 39 (2.10) and 54 (3.15)

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Introduction

Joyce Chan 10 Bronte Explore the ways Dickens presents the relationship between Pip and Magwitch, with particular reference to Chapters 39 (2.10) and 54 (3.15) In Charles Dickens? ?Great Expectations?, Magwitch is a very important figure in Pip?s life as his secret benefactor, who is responsible for Pip?s life as a gentleman and essentially his ?great expectations?. His role in the novel has great significance both at the very beginning, as the terrifying convict, as well as later on in the novel as Pip?s benefactor and eventual friend. During Magwitch?s later appearances in the novel, he is portrayed as a character who is only full of affection for Pip, in stark contrast to the cruel convict that he is in the beginning, however Pip who is still left with the terrifying childhood memories, responds to his kindness only with initial horror. Throughout the whole novel, Dickens cleverly uses the weather and setting as a pathetic fallacy to represent as well as reflect the feelings of Pip towards Magwitch during his appearances. The sensation of disaster striking and a warning that pandemonium is approaching is created by the ?wretched weather; stormy and wet, stormy and wet? which sets the scene for Magwitch?s arrival in Chapter 39 and the complete disgust that Pip is expecting. ...read more.

Middle

It highlights the true affect that Magwitch has had on Pip?s childhood and the significance that this character is having on Pip now, leaving the reader questioning the effect that he will have later on in the novel. In comparison, as the novel progresses to chapter 54, Pip is touched by Magwitch?s fondness towards him, it is clear to see a great change in his feelings and attitude towards his convict. Instead, all indications of horror have been substituted for only sheer concern and care for the old convict as Pip is determined to be ?wholly set on Provis?s safety?. The worry and dedication that Pip has is truly sincere with him showing apprehension at even the smallest of things which indicate that his benefactor is in danger as he exclaims ?What was that ripple!? The extremes that Pip takes to protect Magwitch are almost reflective of how Magwitch had sacrificed so much for him and ?put away money, only for you to spend?. His attitude towards Magwitch has developed and he uses a gentler approach as opposed to using barbaric imperatives as before: ?Stay!? and ?Keep off!? which may have been Pip?s way of expressing his higher class, he instead puts that aside and ?begged him to remain in a sheltered place?, ...read more.

Conclusion

Dickens has constructed Magwitch to play an essential role in the novel as he not only acts as a benefactor for Pip but also to provoke a response to Magwitch?s adoration which assists Pip in his bildungsroman. It is Magwitch?s treating of Pip ?affectionately, gratefully and generously towards me?, as well as his display of warmth for Pip which finally allows Pip to see ?in him a much better man than I had been to Joe.? This is essentially, the moral message of Pip?s life, with Pip as the hero; ?Great Expectations? is the bildungsroman which follows his long journey to learn the important message of appreciating and loving those around him. Magwitch is a very important part of this story as he helps Pip to realise this by displaying unconditional love to him thus making his character all the more significant. In conclusion, Magwitch is certainly a very important character within ?Great Expectations? who plays a crucial role in Pip?s social mobility as well as his bildungsroman. He is a hugely significant character who aids Pip?s journey back to his humble beginnings and Pip himself, grateful for all his sacrifice is eventually able to overcome the horror of the convict and to accept his affectionate benefactor. ...read more.

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