The novel Great Expectations has many different life-changing themes, including an emphasis on self improvement, crime vs. punishment and social classes. The theme of self improvement focuses on education and moral improvement. A full education is a requirement of a gentleman, which Pip strives to be. Pip becomes a gentlemen to impress Estella, with the help of the convict and Matthew Pocket. Dickens shows that self improvement through education is important to get what you want in the world. The moral aspect of the self improvement theme involves adjusting your own moral compass to fit the world around you as you are growing and changing. Pip works hard to be the best person he can be, so whenever he does something not morally right Pip is hard on himself. The next theme discussed in Great Expectations is Crime vs. Innocence. Magwitch, the convict, is a recurring character who was once a convict. Magwitch scared Pip by the way he looked. Pip helped Magwitch at the beginning of novel because he was scared and because Magwitch was a convict ...
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...l parents dead and his sister ‘bringing him up by hand’. ‘Bringing his up by hand’ was the expression used to mean that Pip was abused. Charles Dickens was subjected to a lot of convicts between his father and job at a court, thus creating Madgwick. Madgwick was a convict, who recurred throughout the novel. Both Dickens and Pip rose through the social ladder, eventually not exactly liking the fame. But Pip does it purposefully to possibly attract Estella while Dickens does it by writing, not exactly striving for the amount of fame he receives.
Great Expectations was a novel about the life-altering changed a young man will go for to reach his dream of Estella returning his love. With the complex themes, the interesting conflicts, Dickens’ different tones and the similarities to Dickens’ life, Great Expectations is a must read for all people who love great literature.
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