What Was Charles Dickens Ideology English Literature Essay

2628 words (11 pages) Essay

1st Jan 1970 English Literature Reference this

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He helped the poor, he changed the way one celebrates Christmas, and he conquered through thick and thin… Charles Dickens may be the greatest writer of his time. He changed many lives with his writings, and many poor people were changed for the better by the message he put into his books and stories. It is easily seen how Dickens’ ideology was formed and how it affects one’s life today. In his time, everyone either read Dickens’ books and stories, or they were read to the people by the ones who could actually read the text. Not many people could afford to pay for an education in literature, but that did not stop Charles Dickens from writing some of the greatest novels of his time. By researching the circumstances of Charles Dickens’ life, themes from his books and other stories, and any effects that his literary writings might have had on his readers, one can find out what shaped Dickens’ ideology and the kind of affect that his ideology had on his readers.

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The characters from Dickens’ books are some of the most memorable in literature. His characters often had the same life situations and that is where they gained their qualities. Dickens’ life was filled with hard times and troubles. He gave his characters similar situations. The largest tragic episode of his life was when his father was imprisoned for being in debt (Purdue, ). These misfortunes were not only isolated to Dickens’ family. They were a commonplace in the Victorian Society (Cannadine. 8). He used his experiences to work toward a change (Milczewsky, Vicky. Personal Interview. 11 May, 2010). By researching the facts of Charles Dickens’ lifestyle, family conditions, and tragedies, one can see how certain circumstances shaped his ideology.

What did Charles Dickens think about the world in his time? Charles Dickens’ ideology was that the world was poverty stricken and poor. In the beginning, he enjoyed his life even when it was not the best living situation for a child. Dickens was considered an outcast most of his life. He was not known for his books until later in life. In his books he wrote mainly of the way he lived. His lifestyle mainly consisted of poverty and hard times. But Dickens worked hard and so he continued to write small stories and novels. Every year he had a plan to try and write a new Christmas book. He succeeded. For example, the book A Christmas Carol reflects on the way he lived. His life was filled with orphans, poverty, and even close death. Those are some life circumstances that are reflected into his works. Many of these conditions also came from the influences of his family.

Scenes of family harmony and cozy firesides in many of Dickens’ stories seem in stark contrast to his own family life. His family was not perfect or even close to it. One may guess that his father loved to live big and spend all the money that he and his family had, but could never afford to pay for it. His father was eventually put into a debtors prison until he could pay off his debt. Because of this situation, Charles was put into a shoe shining factory to pay off the debt and provide for the rest of the family because his father could not. Charles’ mother tried to put him back to work after he was kicked out of the factory for picking a fight. He never forgave her for this (Purdue, < http://charlesdickenspage.com/family_friends.html#parents>). Charles’ family was the cause of some of the most painful happenings in his life. Charles’ father was imprisoned because he was reckless with his money and he was in serious debt. His mother needed Charles to work at a shoe shining factory to support the family. His mother also attempted to put him back into the factory after he was in a fight and was driven out. Charles could not go to school until later in his life because his family could not afford it. He wanted to be educated so he would be considered a gentleman. His parents decided to pick the most qualified child to pick to go to school and Charles was not that child. Adding to that, his favorite brother, Alfred, died when he was 38 from Pleurisy (Wikipedia. “Alfred Lament Dickens”). He was the only one of Charles’ brothers that did anything successful with his life. These are only some of the tragic things that happened to Charles Dickens. After researching such things about Charles Dickens as his lifestyle, family, and tragic happenings, one can clearly see how these circumstances shaped his ideology. Dickens had a really hard time with all the things that happened in his life. His family fell apart over the years. Many of the tragedies that happened in his life are shown in his work. Dickens became the most popular writer of the Victorian period because his ideology was shaped by the circumstances of his age.

One’s ideology is the reason why a person believes a certain way. Dickens’ life shaped his ideology. He thought about poverty, death, and Christmas cheer. These are the reflections that one can see in Charles’ Dickens’ works. His mindset of Christmas definitely had an effect on his ideology, but one of the effects of his small works and stories was having worldwide fame. By researching the themes of Charles Dickens’ works, such as his Christmas books, fictional books, and other works, one may determine how these are all related to his ideology.

Much of Dickens’ annual Christmas stories forever linked him with the celebration of Christmas. In his books, he uses a mixture of humor and good cheer. For example, his book The Chimes has characters that were converted from despair to hopeful (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/christmas_books.html#chimes). This book was downgraded because A Christmas Carol became more of a popular book (Purdue). Just like in A Christmas Carol, The Cricket on The Hearth story also has a Scrooge-like conversion of hardhearted person (Purdue), but, his novel The Battle of Life also has this kind of conversion but without super natural beings (Purdue). Like many of Dickens’ Christmas books, the fictional book A Christmas Carol centers on a change of heart (Dickens).

Some of Charles Dickens’ fiction books include A Tale Of Two Cities that is set against a backdrop of the French Revolution. One can guess that his works had a sad plot to them, because in almost every one of his novels and stories someone either dies or is injured. In one of his works Nicholas Nickelby, the plot takes the reader on many ups and downs but in the end everything turns out happy (Purdue). Because Dickens was dealing with financial problems at the time he was writing his novel Martin Chuzzlevit, the story is set on greed (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/chuzzlewit.html). Since Dickens was dealing with a lot of death in his life, especially young children dying, he said that the ones that die young are spared the pain of seeing their loved ones pass away (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/curiosityshop.html). Some of Dickens’ minor works put off his readers and they criticized him about it.

Many of Dickens’ works were minor and judged harshly by readers and critics. Many of his other works like Oliver Twist are judged harshly on the appearances of poor people (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/twist.html). That book was written to show the relief of the poor, which was also part of Dickens’ ideology. Charles Dickens reflects his ideology of the lower classes into his works. Perhaps, because he was robbed so many times when in America, his ideology was formed from the circumstances of his life (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/america.html). His ideology clearly came from his works and shows in his works. Dickens was a hard working, passionate man and he cared about the things that were happening around him and to less fortunate people.

By researching and understanding the writing of Charles Dickens, one can clearly see how his ideology was reflected in his Christmas books, fictional books, stories, and other works. He suffered with large negatives in his life but still managed to have good cheer and a positive attitude most of the time. Even though most of his fictional works had the picture of death and poverty in them, he became the greatest writer of his time. His fiction provided a voice for the causes and frustrations of the poor and working classes helping to assure popularity across class boundaries. Charles Dickens used his ideology of poverty, death, happy Christmas cheer, and many other things he thought about and reflected it into his books and stories.

In the 19th century, there was a major division between the low, poor classes and higher, rich classes. Although many different classes of people read Charles Dickens’ novels, almost all of them were higher class, rich folks. They were the ones who could afford to learn how to read and to afford to buy the books. Dickens was trying to get those people to take an interest in the poor and lower class people. He was trying to tell them about the influences that they could have on the less fortunate by helping out. By looking into the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on his readers, one can see how the writings of Charles Dickens promote and effect change in the people who read his works.

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In the Victorian Period, depending on their social status and their parents’ financial situation, some people may have been able to get an education. Dickens’ works helped expose the atrocities of the workhouse in which child labor was getting higher (Swisher, 2001). The poor were being treated like drones and Dickens helped show this to the public (Cannadine, 1999). The people who got an education were able to read and write so they would buy books. The people who could actually afford books were the wealthy ones. Some people may have not read Dickens’ books at all. Although many others took interest in his books and the message he was trying to convey. Charles Dickens had an amazing gift where he had the ability to capture the imagination of his audience and the gift of observation. He had a very intelligent mind and his unforgettable characters helped his situation (Purdue, ). Dickens made sure to put a message into his works so that the more fortunate people would take the choice to make a connection with the poor. Literacy rates in the Victorian Era were counted by the amount of grooms and bridegrooms that could sign their names on a marriage register. It is not surprising to find that back then, more people could read more than they could write because it was more of an expense to learn how to write along with learning how to read.

(Illustration from: Walter Besant Her Majesty’s glorious jubilee, 1897. (London: Illustrated London News, 1897) Cup.1264.j.9)

Dickens’ novels turned out to have a message for the wealthy readers. Dickens’ books became such an interest to people that he took and advantage of it and kept them wanting more novels. He had always been fascinated by the effect of money on a character (Swisher, 2001). And even the effect that shows what the people with money act like towards the less fortunate. He brought up the condition of the poor so that the rich could sympathize for them. He wrote about them and how they were treated. He raised awareness of the poverty existing in the poor classes. He wanted everybody to care as much as he did for the poor. He exposed their situation. Charles knew that his messages would get across the right people if he wrote them with great intention and place them in the right direction for the people to understand. He used a blended mix of sympathy and humor to get his message across (Swisher, 2001).

Charles Dickens’ audience affected the change of his message. His message had a powerful affect on his readers. The people who read his books changed the lives of many poor, less fortunate people. Because of overpopulation, the poor did not have anywhere to stay, so the wealthy people would reach out to them and help them. Dickens decided to show the world the living situations of the poor through his books that the rich people would read (Purdue. The Novels. 2) He really wanted to bring the poor into the public eye. He succeeded in showing the rich people what the poor were dealing with and showing them how they can help the less fortunate (Dickens).

By researching the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on the people, one can now see that if resources are given to the poor, they can climb to the top by themselves with some help. Because the only people who were able to buy Charles Dickens’ books and also be able to read them were the higher classes, Dickens took advantage of that and put a message into his works. His message showed the people what the poor dealt with and their situation. Some people took his message to heart and helped the poor and even became more thankful for what they had. Charles Dickens changed the lives of many poor families and also the lives of many rich people. He had the ability to influence the people around him so he used that to speak to the public and change the way people look at the less fortunate.

By researching the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on the people, one can now see that if resources are given to the poor, they can climb to the top by themselves. Because the only people who were able to buy Charles Dickens’ books and also be able to read them were the higher classes, Dickens took advantage of that and put a message into his works. His message showed the people what the poor dealt with and their situation. Some people took his message to heart and helped the poor and even became more thankful for what they had. Charles Dickens changed the lives of many poor families and also the lives of many rich people. He had a big voice that he used to speak to the public and change the way people look at the less fortunate.

By looking at the circumstances of Charles Dickens’ life, themes from Dickens’ books and stories, and the great effects that his writing had on his readers, one can now see that Dickens’ ideology was shaped by things such as family troubles, other circumstances that may have occurred, and tragic occurrences in his life. Charles Dickens’ characters are based on the people in his life that he dealt with. Most of the characters that Dickens wrote about were used to show a change of heart or a good deed done. Dickens really believed that the poor needed help and that by helping them out, they could rise to the top. He shows this in his writings about the poor and how the message got to the readers and what was done about it. The readers who could afford to make a difference helped many kids and their families with poverty and labor. The offered a place for them to live in and gave them food. Charles Dickens helped fortunate people to have a big change of heart by putting an extremely important message into his works about the less fortunate and the poor and about how they needed the help that they got.

He helped the poor, he changed the way one celebrates Christmas, and he conquered through thick and thin… Charles Dickens may be the greatest writer of his time. He changed many lives with his writings, and many poor people were changed for the better by the message he put into his books and stories. It is easily seen how Dickens’ ideology was formed and how it affects one’s life today. In his time, everyone either read Dickens’ books and stories, or they were read to the people by the ones who could actually read the text. Not many people could afford to pay for an education in literature, but that did not stop Charles Dickens from writing some of the greatest novels of his time. By researching the circumstances of Charles Dickens’ life, themes from his books and other stories, and any effects that his literary writings might have had on his readers, one can find out what shaped Dickens’ ideology and the kind of affect that his ideology had on his readers.

The characters from Dickens’ books are some of the most memorable in literature. His characters often had the same life situations and that is where they gained their qualities. Dickens’ life was filled with hard times and troubles. He gave his characters similar situations. The largest tragic episode of his life was when his father was imprisoned for being in debt (Purdue, ). These misfortunes were not only isolated to Dickens’ family. They were a commonplace in the Victorian Society (Cannadine. 8). He used his experiences to work toward a change (Milczewsky, Vicky. Personal Interview. 11 May, 2010). By researching the facts of Charles Dickens’ lifestyle, family conditions, and tragedies, one can see how certain circumstances shaped his ideology.

What did Charles Dickens think about the world in his time? Charles Dickens’ ideology was that the world was poverty stricken and poor. In the beginning, he enjoyed his life even when it was not the best living situation for a child. Dickens was considered an outcast most of his life. He was not known for his books until later in life. In his books he wrote mainly of the way he lived. His lifestyle mainly consisted of poverty and hard times. But Dickens worked hard and so he continued to write small stories and novels. Every year he had a plan to try and write a new Christmas book. He succeeded. For example, the book A Christmas Carol reflects on the way he lived. His life was filled with orphans, poverty, and even close death. Those are some life circumstances that are reflected into his works. Many of these conditions also came from the influences of his family.

Scenes of family harmony and cozy firesides in many of Dickens’ stories seem in stark contrast to his own family life. His family was not perfect or even close to it. One may guess that his father loved to live big and spend all the money that he and his family had, but could never afford to pay for it. His father was eventually put into a debtors prison until he could pay off his debt. Because of this situation, Charles was put into a shoe shining factory to pay off the debt and provide for the rest of the family because his father could not. Charles’ mother tried to put him back to work after he was kicked out of the factory for picking a fight. He never forgave her for this (Purdue, < http://charlesdickenspage.com/family_friends.html#parents>). Charles’ family was the cause of some of the most painful happenings in his life. Charles’ father was imprisoned because he was reckless with his money and he was in serious debt. His mother needed Charles to work at a shoe shining factory to support the family. His mother also attempted to put him back into the factory after he was in a fight and was driven out. Charles could not go to school until later in his life because his family could not afford it. He wanted to be educated so he would be considered a gentleman. His parents decided to pick the most qualified child to pick to go to school and Charles was not that child. Adding to that, his favorite brother, Alfred, died when he was 38 from Pleurisy (Wikipedia. “Alfred Lament Dickens”). He was the only one of Charles’ brothers that did anything successful with his life. These are only some of the tragic things that happened to Charles Dickens. After researching such things about Charles Dickens as his lifestyle, family, and tragic happenings, one can clearly see how these circumstances shaped his ideology. Dickens had a really hard time with all the things that happened in his life. His family fell apart over the years. Many of the tragedies that happened in his life are shown in his work. Dickens became the most popular writer of the Victorian period because his ideology was shaped by the circumstances of his age.

One’s ideology is the reason why a person believes a certain way. Dickens’ life shaped his ideology. He thought about poverty, death, and Christmas cheer. These are the reflections that one can see in Charles’ Dickens’ works. His mindset of Christmas definitely had an effect on his ideology, but one of the effects of his small works and stories was having worldwide fame. By researching the themes of Charles Dickens’ works, such as his Christmas books, fictional books, and other works, one may determine how these are all related to his ideology.

Much of Dickens’ annual Christmas stories forever linked him with the celebration of Christmas. In his books, he uses a mixture of humor and good cheer. For example, his book The Chimes has characters that were converted from despair to hopeful (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/christmas_books.html#chimes). This book was downgraded because A Christmas Carol became more of a popular book (Purdue). Just like in A Christmas Carol, The Cricket on The Hearth story also has a Scrooge-like conversion of hardhearted person (Purdue), but, his novel The Battle of Life also has this kind of conversion but without super natural beings (Purdue). Like many of Dickens’ Christmas books, the fictional book A Christmas Carol centers on a change of heart (Dickens).

Some of Charles Dickens’ fiction books include A Tale Of Two Cities that is set against a backdrop of the French Revolution. One can guess that his works had a sad plot to them, because in almost every one of his novels and stories someone either dies or is injured. In one of his works Nicholas Nickelby, the plot takes the reader on many ups and downs but in the end everything turns out happy (Purdue). Because Dickens was dealing with financial problems at the time he was writing his novel Martin Chuzzlevit, the story is set on greed (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/chuzzlewit.html). Since Dickens was dealing with a lot of death in his life, especially young children dying, he said that the ones that die young are spared the pain of seeing their loved ones pass away (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/curiosityshop.html). Some of Dickens’ minor works put off his readers and they criticized him about it.

Many of Dickens’ works were minor and judged harshly by readers and critics. Many of his other works like Oliver Twist are judged harshly on the appearances of poor people (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/twist.html). That book was written to show the relief of the poor, which was also part of Dickens’ ideology. Charles Dickens reflects his ideology of the lower classes into his works. Perhaps, because he was robbed so many times when in America, his ideology was formed from the circumstances of his life (Purdue. http://charlesdickenspage.com/america.html). His ideology clearly came from his works and shows in his works. Dickens was a hard working, passionate man and he cared about the things that were happening around him and to less fortunate people.

By researching and understanding the writing of Charles Dickens, one can clearly see how his ideology was reflected in his Christmas books, fictional books, stories, and other works. He suffered with large negatives in his life but still managed to have good cheer and a positive attitude most of the time. Even though most of his fictional works had the picture of death and poverty in them, he became the greatest writer of his time. His fiction provided a voice for the causes and frustrations of the poor and working classes helping to assure popularity across class boundaries. Charles Dickens used his ideology of poverty, death, happy Christmas cheer, and many other things he thought about and reflected it into his books and stories.

In the 19th century, there was a major division between the low, poor classes and higher, rich classes. Although many different classes of people read Charles Dickens’ novels, almost all of them were higher class, rich folks. They were the ones who could afford to learn how to read and to afford to buy the books. Dickens was trying to get those people to take an interest in the poor and lower class people. He was trying to tell them about the influences that they could have on the less fortunate by helping out. By looking into the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on his readers, one can see how the writings of Charles Dickens promote and effect change in the people who read his works.

In the Victorian Period, depending on their social status and their parents’ financial situation, some people may have been able to get an education. Dickens’ works helped expose the atrocities of the workhouse in which child labor was getting higher (Swisher, 2001). The poor were being treated like drones and Dickens helped show this to the public (Cannadine, 1999). The people who got an education were able to read and write so they would buy books. The people who could actually afford books were the wealthy ones. Some people may have not read Dickens’ books at all. Although many others took interest in his books and the message he was trying to convey. Charles Dickens had an amazing gift where he had the ability to capture the imagination of his audience and the gift of observation. He had a very intelligent mind and his unforgettable characters helped his situation (Purdue, ). Dickens made sure to put a message into his works so that the more fortunate people would take the choice to make a connection with the poor. Literacy rates in the Victorian Era were counted by the amount of grooms and bridegrooms that could sign their names on a marriage register. It is not surprising to find that back then, more people could read more than they could write because it was more of an expense to learn how to write along with learning how to read.

(Illustration from: Walter Besant Her Majesty’s glorious jubilee, 1897. (London: Illustrated London News, 1897) Cup.1264.j.9)

Dickens’ novels turned out to have a message for the wealthy readers. Dickens’ books became such an interest to people that he took and advantage of it and kept them wanting more novels. He had always been fascinated by the effect of money on a character (Swisher, 2001). And even the effect that shows what the people with money act like towards the less fortunate. He brought up the condition of the poor so that the rich could sympathize for them. He wrote about them and how they were treated. He raised awareness of the poverty existing in the poor classes. He wanted everybody to care as much as he did for the poor. He exposed their situation. Charles knew that his messages would get across the right people if he wrote them with great intention and place them in the right direction for the people to understand. He used a blended mix of sympathy and humor to get his message across (Swisher, 2001).

Charles Dickens’ audience affected the change of his message. His message had a powerful affect on his readers. The people who read his books changed the lives of many poor, less fortunate people. Because of overpopulation, the poor did not have anywhere to stay, so the wealthy people would reach out to them and help them. Dickens decided to show the world the living situations of the poor through his books that the rich people would read (Purdue. The Novels. 2) He really wanted to bring the poor into the public eye. He succeeded in showing the rich people what the poor were dealing with and showing them how they can help the less fortunate (Dickens).

By researching the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on the people, one can now see that if resources are given to the poor, they can climb to the top by themselves with some help. Because the only people who were able to buy Charles Dickens’ books and also be able to read them were the higher classes, Dickens took advantage of that and put a message into his works. His message showed the people what the poor dealt with and their situation. Some people took his message to heart and helped the poor and even became more thankful for what they had. Charles Dickens changed the lives of many poor families and also the lives of many rich people. He had the ability to influence the people around him so he used that to speak to the public and change the way people look at the less fortunate.

By researching the demographics and literacy rates of the Victorian Era, Dickens’ message to his readers, and the effect of the message on the people, one can now see that if resources are given to the poor, they can climb to the top by themselves. Because the only people who were able to buy Charles Dickens’ books and also be able to read them were the higher classes, Dickens took advantage of that and put a message into his works. His message showed the people what the poor dealt with and their situation. Some people took his message to heart and helped the poor and even became more thankful for what they had. Charles Dickens changed the lives of many poor families and also the lives of many rich people. He had a big voice that he used to speak to the public and change the way people look at the less fortunate.

By looking at the circumstances of Charles Dickens’ life, themes from Dickens’ books and stories, and the great effects that his writing had on his readers, one can now see that Dickens’ ideology was shaped by things such as family troubles, other circumstances that may have occurred, and tragic occurrences in his life. Charles Dickens’ characters are based on the people in his life that he dealt with. Most of the characters that Dickens wrote about were used to show a change of heart or a good deed done. Dickens really believed that the poor needed help and that by helping them out, they could rise to the top. He shows this in his writings about the poor and how the message got to the readers and what was done about it. The readers who could afford to make a difference helped many kids and their families with poverty and labor. The offered a place for them to live in and gave them food. Charles Dickens helped fortunate people to have a big change of heart by putting an extremely important message into his works about the less fortunate and the poor and about how they needed the help that they got.

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