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great expectations

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Introduction

How does Dickens present childhood in Great Expectations? This was Dickens' second-to-last complete novel. It was first published as a weekly series which made its first appearance in December 1860. Similar to Dickens' memories of his own childhood and his great use of complex dual perspective we experience in his early years the young Pip seemed powerless to stand against injustice or to ever realize his dreams for a better life. In this story Pip has "Great Expectations" of becoming a gentle man which he made true by the help of his secret benefactor which we discover in chapter 39. In the beginning few chapters, we find out that he is in the graveyard reading tomb stones of family members he has never seen before. The childhood of Pip was very lonely because Pip's first memories are of him finding out that his family are all dead and buried, this is not a very nice memory and shows that Dickens feels that childhood was a very awful period of life. Pip lives with his high-tempered elder sister and her gentle husband, Joe. Pip is satisfied with this unpleasant life until he is hired by a bitter but wealthy woman, Miss Havisham, as a companion to her and her beautiful but overconfident adopted daughter, Estella. ...read more.

Middle

The used of retrospective narrative is useful as it gives the reader the immediate effect of being part of the story. He also uses childish vocabulary to make it sound as he was living today as a child. Further more the use of phonetically written words help his achievement of being a child, "drat that boy". The novel begins with young orphaned Pip running in obedience of an escaped convict in a cemetery. This terrifying figure bullies Pip into stealing food and a file for him, threatening that if he tells a soul "your heart and your liver shall be tore out, roasted and ate. The boy does as he's asked, but the convict is captured anyway, and transported to the punishing colonies in Australia. Having started his novel in a cemetery and having been "turned upside down" to check his pockets also surrounds another meaning which symbolises Pip's life turning around. Pip's treatment at the forge fits in with Victorian beliefs in up bringing of children, because of the way Pip is treated by Mrs Gargery. Children should be seen not heard''. Shows that Victorians believed in well behaved children with strict disciplines and this is shown through Pip's action at the beginning when we see him to have been bought up to respect his elders and superiors. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, it is very hard to believe that Pip would dismiss Pumblechook so easily. I think that Estella's actions were not because she dislikes Pumblechook but the way she has been brought up, she is very rich and therefore treats lower classes as inferior to her because they work for the rich. On the other hand, Pip is a poor child who has been taught manners and to respect the elders. I think this will compensate for his labour class so he is accepted by employers to be able to earn and survive in the poverty of England. This shows that in the Victorian times childhood wasn't spent at school getting education but working in hardship to be able to survive. Generally, I think that this novel is based morality and the manipulation of the Victorian societies showing growing differences between the rich and poor which the rich would find a normal thing. However, this novel was made to show how it is actually like from dual perspective from poor to rich metaphorically child Pip at the forge and when he became a rich gentle man. It shows how children are badly treated by their elders and superiors. Charles Dickens successfully portrays childhood and examples of manipulation, and this affected the attitudes of people of the Victorian era because it was a new way of portraying the fact of pride and prejudice between the poor and rich. ?? ?? ?? ?? Amire Miah ...read more.

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