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How is Scrooge presented in a Christmas Carol - What is he like? Are we sympathetic to him? Does he change? What language features are used to do this?

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Introduction

A CHRISTMAS CAROL How is Scrooge presented in a Christmas Carol - What is he like? Are we sympathetic to him? Does he change? What language features are used to do this? Ebenezer Scrooge This essay is looking at the character, Ebenezer Scrooge throughout the play. It looks at the person he is and the person he becomes. It also looks at the language Dickens uses to portray Mr Scrooge. Dickens portrays Scrooge as a ' tight fisted, penny pincher' with alliterations and metaphors such as, 'wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner' emphasising his meanness. He seems a mean old man with no time for the festivities of Christmas, nor any other special day at that! Even when the cheerful voice of his nephew rings out to wish him a very Merry Christmas, his reply was ' Bah, Humbug!' He snubs visitors with the frost of his nature and speaks with a voice that begrudges their happiness and united joy. He is even bitter to the clerk, Bob Cratchit for having a paid day off, stating ' A poor excuse for picking a man's pocket every twenty - fifth of December! ' (Stave 1) When the ghost of Marley appears, Scrooge tries to jest with him to distract his fears but the spectre voice 'disturbs the very marrow in his bones.' ...read more.

Middle

There is almost a twist of irony as Scrooge tells the spirit that 'The happiness he gives, is quite as great as if it cost a fortune.' (Stave 2) It is a shame that Scrooge himself does not practice what he preaches, he certainly has the money to do so! They then leave Mr. Fezziwig and arrive to see Ebenezer's old love Belle becoming a victim of the cold Scrooge as money becomes his new love, and soon manifests into an obsession. On the arrival of the second ghost, the ghost of Christmas Present, Dickens bombards the reader with a mass of imagery to do with food and the ghost itself. It portrays a friendly, warm feeling, one that is inviting. However it is apparent that Scrooge is nervous as he protects himself with wiry, humour. He is taken to see how the others celebrate Christmas. There is a noticeable change in Scrooge's attitude when he learns that Bob Cratchit's ill son, Tiny Tim will die. He begs the spirit, ' Oh no, kind Spirit! Say he will be spared' This does not sound like the cruel, hardhearted man that the story began with. Next, it is his nephew's home where the air is full of laughter, happiness and mockery towards the meanness of Scrooge, but still raises a Christmas toast to him The last ghost, the ghost of Christmas yet to come then visits. ...read more.

Conclusion

I will live in the Past, the Present and the Future. Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I shall not shut out the lesson they teach' (Stave 4) On Christmas morning, Scrooge wakes up a changed man, for the better of course! Dickens uses similes such as 'light as a feather' and 'happy as an angel' to help the reader understand and gain the feeling of the new improved Mr Scrooge! The repetition of the word 'and' quickens the pace, and indicates the excitement felt by Scrooge. Scrooge remembers all that was shown to him and he sets off to alter the future, which only evoked doom. He buys an overwhelmingly large turkey for Bob Cratchit, attends his Nephews party and generally spreads the good will and festive cheer of Christmas! Scrooge keeps his promise, and everyone benefits. There is a repetition of the word good ' He became a good friend, a good master, and as good a man, as the good old city knew, or any other good old city, town or borough, in the good Old World' (Stave 5) This proves that he has genuinely changed for the better of himself and everyone around him. The moral of the story is, as Dickens surely tried to put across, that it is never too late to alter your ways, and if you don't change, things could happen to you too. Katrina Thomas 1 ...read more.

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