Charles Dickens and A Christmas Carol

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Charles Dickens and A Christmas Carol:
Famed British author, Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in
Portsmouth, England. He was the second of eight children, living in a poor neighborhood in
London. His parents were John Dickens, a naval clerk, who always lived beyond his means.
Married to his mother Elizabeth Dickens, who aspired to be a teacher and a school director.
Dickens went to William Giles’ school in Chatham, Kent, for approximately one year before his father’s money habits caught up with him.
Dickens’ father was sent to prison for debt in 1824, when Dickens’ was just twelve years old. Following his father’s imprisonment, Dickens’ had to drop out of school to work at a boot-blacking factory along the River of Thames. He earned 6 shillings a week, which is a dollar and forty-four cents in US money. It was the best he could do to help support his family. Pondering the experience of working, Dickens saw it as the moment he said goodbye to his youthful innocence, stating that he wondered “how he could be so easily cast away at such a young age” (Charles Dickens Bio. Bio.com. N.d. 18 Oct. 2013).
Dickens’ felt abandoned and betrayed by the adults who were supposed to take care of him. These sentiments would later become a theme in his writing. Dickens was able to go back to school when his father received an inheritance and paid off his debts. At the time, he went to Wellington House Academy in London for nearly three years. In 1827, Dickens had to drop out of school again when he was just 15 to contribute to his family’s income. Dickens’ got a job as an office boy, which was an early launching point for his writing career. A few years later, in 1833, he began sending sketches to various magazines...

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...kens’ writing career he began a second career by performing public readings of his works to packed houses throughout Britain and America. The most popular of his readings was A Christmas Carol for which he wrote a condensed version that he could read in an hour and a half.
Dickens’ name had become so synonymous with Christmas that on hearing of his death in 1870, a little girl in London asked, “Mr. Dickens dead? Then will Father
Christmas die too?” (David Perdue’s Charles Dickens Page. Charles Dickens Page. N.p., n.d.
Web. 24 Oct. 2013). Many people would say Dickens has probably had more influence on the way that we celebrate Christmas today than any single individual in human history...except Santa
Claus.

Works Cited

David Perdue’s Charles Dickens Page. Charles Dickens Page. N.p., n.d.
Web. 24 Oct. 2013
Charles Dickens Bio. Bio.com. N.d. 18 Oct. 2013

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