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Great Expectations

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In Great Expectations how does Dickens make the reader feel sympathetic for Pip? In Great Expectations, Dickens creates sympathy for Pip using a combination of devices. It seems he was successful however, was it the trials and tribulations he faced this poor boy through, or could it have been "the voice" engaging the reader as empathy was created. Fortunately the novel was written in the first person; therefore it will be easier to sense how Pip is feeling. Dickens uses narrative voice to create sympathy for Pip in 'Great Expectations'. The novel is written in the first person and is narrated by Pip which benefits the reader as they are able to hear his emotions and thoughts of events and other characters in the novel, and helps them to sympathise with Pip. The story is told retrospectively, from the point of view of Pip when he is an older man, about when he was a young boy. This allows the reader to see other possible truths as they understand the emotions that the young Pip is experiencing, but they also know how Pip feels about the situation looking back on it. Dickens uses pathos effectively to create sympathy for young Pip. He explains within the first paragraph that "his infant tongue could not make of both names" and this creates pathos because it makes him different from other children as usually even children can pronounce their own names. ...read more.


These death references suggest that Magwitch is close to dying and that the dead are trying to lure him into a grave so he can die. This conveys his vulnerability which is in contrast to when he was threatening Pip and these aspects create sympathy for him. Magwitch and Pip both have certain characteristics in common. They are both scared of something. Pip is scared of Magwitch in the graveyard scene as he appears threatening at first as he intimidates Pip. Magwitch is then described by Pip as "a fearful man" because Magwitch is scared of another escaped convict. Moreover they both have a low social status as Pip is "a common labouring boy" and Magwitch lacks education which is shown through his dialogue. In addition both characters have faced tough times in their lives; Magwitch is an escaped convict and therefore has served time in prison and Pip has lost his parents and five brothers. All of these similarities create sympathy for both of the characters as the readers can see they are both struggling and vulnerable and therefore they might feel sympathy or even pity towards them both. Miss Havisham, the wealthy, eccentric old woman who lives in a manor called Satis house near Pip's village. She manic and often seems insane, flitting around her house in a faded wedding dress, keeping a decaying feats on her table, and surrounding herself with clocks stopped at twenty minutes to nine. ...read more.


However they may be different but both have suffered great losses. In chapter one it was Abel Magwitch, a fearsome criminal later discovered as a father figure to Pip, but was still a cause to feeling sympathetic towards Pip. In chapter eight it was Miss Havisham, an eccentric old woman frozen in time. This decaying woman too brought some sympathy towards Pip. These two characters made Pip feel terror and upset after his encounter with them. Reasons being he was insulted countless times by them as they were either superior or inferior to him. They would either insult his appearance or haunt him with there frequent threats. In spite of this Magwitch did not mean any real harm to the boy whilst Miss Havisham was causing terror for him in favour of her own sick and twisted amusement from the child. As a final point from looking at these two extracts it can be seen that Pip's characterisation of people gave him the most sympathy. The reason being for this would be the way Magwitch, Mrs Havisham and Estella come across to him. This is because these characters are quite peculiar as to how he was before meeting them. The success of this novel links to Dickens technique of using the first person making the reader feel more protective of Pip. To conclude Dickens was a success in creating sympathy for Pip. ?? ?? ?? ?? Huma Darr Mr. Mieszkian ...read more.

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