"Sow the same seed of rapacious license and oppression ever again, and it will surely yield the same fruit according to its kind." (385) This quote from Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities illustrates Dickens' bias for the revolting class during the French Revolution. In the book, however, Dickens does vilify the violence that is inherent in this Revolution. He also puts his own slant on the way the Revolution occurs and who leads it. This bias could be attributed to who he was and who his audience was.
The poem metaphorically suggests the theme of the tendency toward violence and oppression in revolutionaries after being so wrongfully treated by the aristocracy. Dickens supports this theme by finding immense fault in the social structure of society, the judicial system during that time period, and the lunacy of the revolution. Throughout the novel, Dickens approaches the revolution with ambivalence. He provides layers of perspective, for while he supports the revolutionary cause, he often gestures to the evil of the revolutionaries themselves. Dickens often conveys his deep sympathy towards the plight of the French peasantry and accentuates their need for liberation.
In fighting malice with malice, the peasants produce no real revolution; instead, they only continue the violence that they themselves have suffered. Although Dickens views the French Revolution as a symbol of revolution and rebirth, he stresses that its violent methods ultimately caused more harm than good in the end through his figurative language, tone, and Much of the action in A Tale of Two Cities takes place in Paris during the French Revolution, which began in 1789. In his novel, Dickens shows how the tyranny of the French aristocracy - unjust laws, high taxes, and little or no concern for the well-being of the commoners - fueled a wrath amongst the poor that in time exploded into rebellion. Dickens represents this
La Guillotine proves how the actions of inhumanity during the revolution are so gruesome and unjust. The grindstone, knitting, and La Guillotine excellently symbolize one theme of a Tale of Two Cities, inhumanity of men towards men. The blood shed during the revolution symbolizes the wrongness of man inflicting pain on others. Also, the killing, planning of murders, and the weapons used are all signs of using resources to hurt and avenge instead of bring justice to the people. By giving the reader these Metaphors, Dickens teaches the reader that inhumanity towards his own can go too far because of an extreme thirst and need for vengeance.
Dickens' social ideas in this novel are quite simple. He feels the French Revolution was inevitable because the aristocracy oppressed the being "of the poor, driving them to revolt" (Cliff notes). In A Tale of Two Cities Dickens attempts to show his readers the dangers of a possible revolution (Cliff notes). He relies on his descriptive skills to convey the significance of revolution and resurrection in the novel. In addition, he portrays the horror of mob violence throughout the novel, leaving the readers with images of waves of people crashing through the battered gates of the Bastille, for exampl... ... middle of paper ... ... Dr. Manette and he is returned to sanity.
Though political language aims to “ . . . make lies sound truthful and murders respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to a pure wind.” (Orwell 1), Dickens counteracts these effects with language of his own Naming schemes, vacuous logic, and the gothic element all work in unison to convey his frustration toward the court system to provide a modern audience with a historical record of its shortcomings.
He may kindle empathy for the revolutionary peasants one moment and inspire feeling for the imprisoned aristocrats the next, making the book a more multi-sided work. Dickens uses imagery throughout the novel to manipulate the reader’s compassion in the peasants’ favor, in the nobles defense, and even for the book’s main villainess, Madame Defarge. With imagery revealing the poor straits and desperation of the peasant class of France, Dickens influences the reader to pity them. He writes, “The cloud settled on Saint Antoine, which a momentary gleam had driven from his sacred countenance, the darkness of it was heavy—cold, dirt, sickness, ignorance, want were the lords waiting on the saintly presence—nobles of great power all of them; but most especially the last” (Dickens 22). Through hunger, want, etc.
Sex was taboo and purity was held sacred to the Victorian middle and upper class, but prostitution and sexually transmitted diseases ran rampant among the lumpenproletariat. The rich strive to be pious and good, but consider those of lower social standing to be less than human. The reaction of the characters in Dracula to the evil of the vampires can be likened to the Victorian conception of the lower classes. They were seen as a hedonistic but powerful force, with the collective capacity to end the affluent citizen's way of life. In this sense, the novel can be viewed as a struggle to maintain upper-class Victorian traditions against the traditions of the lower class.
Even when Dorian hypothetically asks Lord Henry if he thinks he killed Basil, Lord Henry does not even consider the possibility and laughs it off. Without the fear of society knowing the truth, appearing moral is no longer a concern of Dorian’s. In particular, when Dorian breaks Sibyl’s heart and she commits suicide, he feels no sense of responsibility because he knows no one will blame him. Wilde incorporates this element to stress the point that the only reason people choose to do righteous acts is because society is there to punish them and hold them accountable to their name. Therefore when humans have a free pass, iniquitous acts are done habitually.
This is a major theme of the story and is seen throughout it. Golding himself even states that “man produces evil as a bee produces honey.” A review of the book states how Golding portrays this “because the boys are suffering from the terrible disease of being human.” Piggy, Ralph, and Simon are the “rational good of mankind” portrayed in the book, and Jack and his hunters are the “evil savagery of mankind.” “The beast” is a symbol for the evil in all humans, and Simon and Piggy, or rationality, are almost helpless in his presence. Simon, though, in a book filled with evil, is a symbol of vision and salvation. He is the one to see the evil as it truly exists, in the hearts of all humanity. When he tries to tell the others of this truth, however, he is killed, much like Christ was trying to bring salvation to the ignorant.