The Perfect Example Of The Wounded Artist : Charles Dickens ' The Second Of Eight Children Of John And

The Perfect Example Of The Wounded Artist : Charles Dickens ' The Second Of Eight Children Of John And

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Novelist, short story writer, dramatist, and poet Charles Dickens is a great entertainer and comic genius who has come to be known as the perfect example of the wounded artist (C). Charles John Huffman Dickens, the second of eight children of John and Elizabeth Dickens, was born February 7, 1812 in Portsmouth, England (A). Born into a lower middle-class family, Dickens’ father served as a minor government official (E, A). Although he was plagued with illnesses, Dickens’ early childhood is considered a happy one filled with stories told by his parents and his nurse (A); this is the time of his life when young Charles was first introduced to books and theater (E). Charles’ happy childhood came to a halt when his father was transferred to London for financial reasons (B). Constantly living beyond his means, Dickens’ father had dug himself deep into debt and was sent to a debtor’s prison along with his entire family (F). At the age of twelve, Dickens was considered old enough to work and was sent to a boot-blacking warehouse pasting labels on bottles (A). Feeling alone and afraid in a strange city separated from his family, Charles endured dangerous and distressing experiences that led to the cause of his contempt of the social system and his longing desire to never have to live like this again (B). This strong desire of advancing beyond one’s social status is a common theme in literature of the Victorian period (G).
Beginning in the 1830s and continuing into the beginning of the twentieth century, the Victorian age was a time of significant changes; theories of science and technology were expanded, England’s population nearly doubled, and the growth of industrial cities led to the so-called “Industrial Revolution” (H). Machinery mad...


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...any of the social ills of the time through education and social reform which could not have been done without the social consciousness raised by the immensely popular works of Charles Dickens himself (Q).
Two of Dickens’ early works fall into the category of a popular form of the novel in the nineteenth century known as the bildungsroman; this is a novel in which the protagonist’s character slowly develops through the experiences of the plot as they unfold (NEW). Dickens’ is famous for using this novel form as it fits with his common theme of social protest (NEW). Both of his novels Oliver Twist and Great Expectations show child protagonists who either grow or desire to grow in some way (all me). In his novel Oliver Twist, Dickens’ uses an orphaned child protagonist that is exposed to the harsh reality of the day-to-day life of the lowest members of English society.

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