Charles Dickens ' Great Expectations Essay example

Charles Dickens ' Great Expectations Essay example

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Charles Dickens presents a very different view of Victorian women in his novel Great Expectations and they suffer badly in the hands of men. Dickens provides powerful portraits of manipulative women including Mrs. Joe, Estella, Miss Havisham and Molly. He depicts women in his novel with little softness and he has very little sympathy for them. Charles Dickens filled his novel with mutilated women. Why does Charles Dickens portray the majority of the characters in Great Expectations this way. Dickens depiction of women is unorthodox and it could be attributed to his personal experience with females in the 19th century.
Dickens through Great Expectations seemed to have depiction of women and according to Martin Chilton should not be surprising that he did. Charles Dickens stated in 1842 “Catherine is as near being a donkey as one of her sex can be” (Chilton). Catherine was Dickens wife from 1836 to 1858; they had many kids together. Many believe Dickens terrified and depressed his wife of many years. Dickens had trouble depicting a mature female. Chilton states, "his own relations with women were all damaged, incomplete or destructive" (Chilton). There is obviously a connection between his personal experience and they way he depicts Mrs. Joe and others.


Dickens relationship with women gave him many feelings to draw upon to display in his writing. Martin Chilton thought Miss Havisham was Dickens himself. The women in Great Expectations live under year’s of oppression. The cast of characters we saw were not educated and were in difficult personal situations. Peter Scheckner says, “ the genealogies in this work show that virtually every female in the novel is a victim of oppressive circumstances, if not of economics then of a sex...


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...trated with the large majority of the female characters most of the time but evidently he would struggle without them. I truly, believe though if he had a more supportive stepmother, he would have ended up in a better situation and would be able to sustain his success.
Charles Dickens was a novelist who wrote intense stories about the journey of Pip to fulfill his expectations. He was a man who had a difficult family situation. It was evident he was cruel to his wife Catherine and the fact that he did not even communicate to his ex wife that their son had died, he later sent a letter after the fact. These deplorable behaviors led to his depiction of many evil female characters in Great Expectations. Men in the novel were portrayed in a far better light and the depictions of women were disturbing to many has most Victorian women of the time were the total opposite.

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