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How does Dickens manipulate the readers feeling to theese two characters in Great Expectations?

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Introduction

How does Dickens manipulate the reader's feelings towards the following characters in Great Expectations? o Mr. Joe o Miss. Havisham Born in February 1812, Charles Dickens became the second of eight children. Using his own childhood experiences, Dickens went on to write a wide range of novels know world-wide. In 1860, Dickens novel 'Great Expectations' was published. The novel explores the way society was viewed in 1821. Dickens novel follows the narrator, Pip, as he goes to London in his quest to become a gentleman. He carefully chose words, situations and characters to manipulate the way the reader felt about and read the story. I will be analysing his techniques and how he used them to manipulate the reader's feelings towards the characters throughout this essay. In the novel, Pip comes across many people and has his opinion on them. Due to the fact we are seeing the story through Pip's eyes; because the novel is in first person, we often will have the same opinion on them as he does. However, we can choose whether Pip is a reliable source or not. Mr. Joe Gargery is married to Pips sister and is really the only male figure in his life. Miss Havisham is brought up in Chapter eight. An immensely rich woman living on her own. She is a woman who calls on Pip to come and play in her house. Early on we are introduced to Joe. ...read more.

Middle

Pip is standing outside Miss Havisham's house when we first get a glimpse of what her character is like. A lot of Dickens novels written in the 19th century had one thing in common. The characters personality was shown in their house. Miss Havisham's house for instance is described on page 55. " ... We came to Miss Havisham's house, which was of old brick, and dismal, and has a great many iron bars to it. Some of the windows had been walled up; of those that remained, all the lower were rustily barred. From reading this paragraph, Dickens has already described Miss Havisham to a great extent. 'Old brick' This is used to show that Miss Havisham has passed her youth and is getting on in her life. 'Many iron bars to it' This is used to show that Miss Havisham is a recluse. She doesn't ever leave and the usage of iron bars makes the house seem like a prison keeping her in there. "There was a court-yard in front, and that was barred; so, we had to wait...until someone should come to open it." This adds to the eeriness of the house as well, but also reflects Miss Havisham's character. Old. Deserted. Alone. Entering the house, Pip follows Estella, who collected him, to Miss Havisham's room. Her room is quite big and grand, "And found myself in a pretty large room, well lighted with wax candles...in it was a draped table with a gilded looking-glass, and that I made out a first sight to be a fine lady's dressing-table." ...read more.

Conclusion

This shows automatically that there has been a role reversal. Earlier Pip had been weak and timid and now it is as if Miss Havisham is the child. The cruelty of her actions seems to have finally hit her, and she breaks down, crying "What have I done!" and even falls to her knees before Pip and begs his forgiveness. Dickens uses Miss Havisham in this Chapter as if she had 'seen the light' and wants to repent her sins. At first in the book we don't really like her, but now as she repents we grow fond of her and do indeed like her. Pip leaves the room, though returns a few minutes later on some odd presentiment. Just as he walks through the door, the old woman's dress catches fire, and Pip wrestles her to the ground to smother the flames. Both of them are burned, Miss Havisham so badly that she is wrapped in gauze and laid out on the bridal table, in a sort of hideous echo of her normal white bridal gear. The doctor warns that there is danger of her going into nervous shock. To conclude. Charles Dickens, one of the great writers of his time, uses many different techniques in Great Expectations to manipulate the reader's feelings towards a character, such as repetition, confusion, the use of colours and dramatic irony. He uses his techniques to make us feel sorry for the 'bad' characters yet he controls this so that by the end we do Infact like them, which is why he is know worldwide for his work today. By Jack Cooper ...read more.

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