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"Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens and "The darkness Out There" by Penelope Lively. Examine the ways used by both writers to depict character.

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Introduction

"Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens and "The darkness Out There" by Penelope Lively. * Examine the ways used by both writers to depict character. I am going to look at chapter 8 of 'Great Expectations'. There are four main characters in this chapter. They are Pumblechook, Pips , Miss Havisham and Estella. The story begins when a poor orphan boy known as Pips, visits a strange old lady named Miss Havisham to play with a girl called Estella of his own age. Miss Havisham's family is a very high-class family. The story I will be looking at next is called 'The Darkness Out There'. There are three main characters in Penelope Lively's short story. They are: Mrs Rutter, Sandra and Kerry. The story is about a teenage girl who as part of the school 'Good Neighbours Club visits an old lady in her cottage and meets a boy her own age on the way there. The story is based on the memories of the old lady about the Second World War, which she narrates to the two teenagers. In ' Great Expectations' Uncle Pumblechook is portrayed as if he is a pompous, self-important man. ...read more.

Middle

" You are to wait here, you boy." As a result of the humiliation and remarks made by Estella and Miss Havisham, we notice that Pip's view of himself changed as a result of the visit. " I took the opportunity of being alone in the court-yard, to look at my coarse hands and my common boots. My opinion of those accessories was not favourable. They had never troubled me before, but they troubled me now, as vulgar appendages". This visit had a big influence of the way Pip looks at himself; maybe they succeeded in breaking his heart and achieved their aim. In "The Darkness out There" Penelope Lively's way of telling the story is different from that of Charles Dickens. In "Great Expectations" Dickens uses the first person narrative to tell the reader the story. He tells the story as if he was one of the characters. The narrative unfolds through the eyes of Pip. In 'The Darkness out There', Penelope Lively uses third person narrative. She tells the story from different points of view, and through different characters. She thus portrays a clear image of the scene in the reader's mind, and makes the reader imagine and feel the situation, as if the reader is a part of the story. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, this soon changes when she tells Kerry and Sandra the story of the German airman who died at Packer's End and how she left him to die in front of her without or trying to save him. What is really disturbing about the way she tells the story is that she doesn't regret what she done and she doesn't show any sympathy to the dead pilot: "I thought , oh no, you had this coming to you, mate, there's a war on" (p.63) Mrs Rutter acted out of revenge as her young husband had been killed in the war by Germans. But after all these years, she still had no feelings of regret and remorse and is portrayed as a lonely and bitter woman. Penelope Lively also gives an indication of characterisation through her description of the setting. Sandra's light-weight and frivolous personality is signalled by the summer flowers of 'ox eye daisies and vetch and cow parsley ? And the dark side of Mrs Rutter is hinted at by Packer's End with 'light suddenly shutting off the bare wide sky of the field! English Course work Abdelrahman Hamid ...read more.

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