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Great Expectations

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Introduction

Great Expectations - Charles Dickens Attitudes to Victorian Life This essay will go through the first chapter of Great Expectations and how Charles Dickens tries to raise awareness of Victorian life. Great Expectations was originally published in the All Year Round magazine and it was published in 3-4 chapters and it was aimed at middle class people as he tried to show people how life was for those less fortunate. The other thing about the way Great Expectations was published was that the end of each section he would have to end on a cliff hanger to keep the readers interested and that was very appealing then and still is now. Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth on the 7th February 1812 and he was the second child of eight. He learnt his basic reading and writing skill at William Giles which is in Camden, at a very young age he became very interested in reading and developed a love for novels by Tobias Smollet and Harry Fielding. At the infantile age of 12 his father was sent to prison for debt and this comes through in Great Expectations when Pip goes into debt after he has his accident but Joe relinquishes his debt for him. ...read more.

Middle

Pip is very childish and as every child thinks that if they do something long enough and want something enough then it will come true and drawing the same conclusion he thinks that by talking like gentleman he will become one himself. The story is narrated by an older Pip and when Magwitch is introduced into the story we see him through the eyes of Pip and this changes they was we see Magwitch, Pip is a young, infantile person and the was he might see Magwitch would be different to the was we would see him. The first thing we would see on Magwitch would be the chains and we would automatically run without giving him a chance but the way Pip sees him is completely different, by seeing Magwitch in the chains we would think that he is a terrible man who has committed a crime worse than murder but the infantile Pip sees a man who has been battered by the environment he sees "a man soaked in water, and smothered in mud, and lamed by stones, and cut by flints", he does not see a terrible convict he sees a man who needs help and that is why he steals the food and the file for him, he does it out of pity and out of fear. ...read more.

Conclusion

Magwitch is thought to be an insignificant addition to the story but the way he is introduced into the story would make the reader there is something more to this seemingly irrelevant character. Dickens uses fairly complex sentences to show that Magwitch is not as simple as some may think, he is a convict and always will be which is the way it was back then but Magwitch proves himself to be a man not worthy of being labelled a convict, but that he is so much more. I think this book appeals to the reader so much because of the style that it is written in and they was Pip is introduced as this small, lonely, childish boy with no hope in the world and who has no chance of changing his destiny. The novel is such a great book because it is different to most things even though it is written in the same style as a lot of other novels of the same time, many of the books written at the same time likeThe Insulted and Humiliated by Fyodor Dostoevsky, had very bleak and miserable story lines and ended with misery but not Great Expectations, I think that Dickens had such a bad story much the same to Pip that he wanted different for him and so he gave him what he wanted in the end. ...read more.

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