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How does charles dickens create sympathy for oliver twist ?

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Education
Wordcount: 1387 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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How does Charles Dickens create sympathy for Oliver Twist ?

Oliver Twist- How does Charles Dickens create sympathy for Oliver Twist in the first four chapters? Charles Dickens is the author of many descriptive books, Oliver Twist. Charles Dickens was born in 1812 at Portsmouth the eldest of eight children two of whom died in childhood. Growing up, he saw his father go to Marshalsea Prison with his mum and five other siblings because he did not manage his money well. He was put into a warehouse since his family had to sell all of their possessions. Here he had to stick labels on boot-black. However he later returned to school for a short while, teaching himself shorthand and was working as a court reporter by the age of sixteen. Dickens integrated his childhood experience within the novel so his readers can have some insight into the cruelty which existed in the warehouse.

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In the Victorian depending on your career status you either had a nice or a horrible life. Oliver twist was brought into the world “he was ushered into this world of sorrow and trouble” described as “the thing” he got treated like he wasn’t anybody because “no wedding ring, I see. Ah!” meaning because she wasn’t married in those times if you was pregnant and not married you was looked at like a slapper. This shows that he wasn’t planned for and know one cared or wanted to look after him. He got given birth by a drunken doctor and nurse which shows if you wasn’t rich you would of given birth in a dusty horrible warehouse with drunken corrupt doctor and nurse. Which the mother of Oliver twist knew how horrible the surroundings and badly treated you was she strolling down any road to avoid the warehouses.

Dickens continues his violent assaults on the conditions fostered by the Poor Law of 1834, which was in the workhouses and the escort brutal and sarcastic treatment of helpless the poor , young and old alike. The practice of deliberately starving the unfortunates furthermore, he does not like individuals who take advantage of the victims of lack of money in order to take advantage of their labour at the cost of food. We are again reminded how much Oliver is at the mercy of chance. If the dim-sighted magistrate had not glanced about in search of the stand of his writing materials he would not have noticed the boy’s frightened expression, and the documents would have been signed, horrified Oliver to the horrors of cleaning chimneys under a heartless master.

A variety of irony is dramatic irony, a term applied to a situation in a play when the actors are ignorant of the true significance of the circumstances or the words spoken, while the audience is informed of the actual state of affairs. A highly ironical development of that sort occurs in the scene between the undertaker and Mr. Bumble. When Sowerberry compliments the beadle on his beautiful coat button, Bumble explains proudly that it is a reward from the board: “The die is the same as the parochial­­­­­­­ seal—the Good Samaritan healing the sick and bruised man.” The speakers are oblivious to the cutting irony.

Dickens regularly shows irony into a single descriptive phrase. Thus Bumble is showed “that dignitary” and the like, but his true nature is obvious. Often, the application of “philosopher” carries negative meaning, particularly when used in connection with the political economists who were apologists for the current attitudes Dickens found so unpleasant. These “philosophers” were individuals that he would have share Oliver’s dog-food leftovers.

Oliver was treated badly in his childhood life, he was born not knowing his mother feeling unloved that no one wanted him. “Oliver should be farmed” he got treated like a dog who was bought sold and worked long hours getting treated like a slave but not knowing what’s life outside the real wide world. Charles dickens shows a key scene when all the orphanages get given the cheapest possible meals to the children, pretty much starving them and the main character wanted show everyone that’s he is different by saying “Please, sir, can I have some more?”.It also shows how horrible they used to treat young children on how bad waste the food and they work a whole day and get breaks like 10 minutes which was just enough to eat the food quickly. He uses complex sentences contrasting the bad the life of the children and the good life describing the rich as full of money and all full of them themselves. He also uses dramatic irony”Oliver twists eighth birthday found him a pale , thin child, somewhat small in height and decidedly small in circumference””had been looked up therein for presuming to be hungry” this shows that the only thing he got for his birthday not knowing what birthdays is , a lump of cheap food and dirty water which just kept him alive and working.

Charles Dickens shows how the magistrates are well off and full of themselves eating on a posh table stuffing their faces. Laughing on how much money they are saving by cheap labour .Looking down to the children as if their nothing of their standards just slaves who work for them. Oliver twist the worker who is punished and gets told how he’s lucky that they brought him up gave him food and put a shelter of his head. They brainwashed him to make him feel that he wasn’t loved and abonded that his mother left him and she died.

In the Victorian time the system was corrupt using children to work long hours hardly any breaks and it was cheap labour getting a pence every month just enough for them to survive. They got easily forced to work in terrible environment not knowing their own family brainwashed that their family didn’t want them so they brang them put a roof of their head so be grateful you’re living. Charles Dickens wanted to show all of the people of the 19th century in the centuries in the future that life in those times wasn’t a pleasant time, using his life as an example putting a message in the book that Oliver wasn’t the first to get treated there was many like him in that time. So he didn’t want this to carry on in the near future so he wrote the book to tell true and horrific facts.

Mr. Bumble -Self-important beadle—a minor church official—for the workhouse where Oliver is born. Though Mr. Bumble preaches Christian morality, he behaves without compassion toward the paupers under his care.

Mrs. Mann-Mrs. Mann physically abuses and half-starves the children in her care.

Mr. Sowerberry -The undertaker to whom Oliver is apprenticed.

I think that the characters that are responsible for Oliver’s mistakes in living in the new town is Mrs. Mann who hated didn’t care described him as the thing at birth is one of the reasons he’s had a bad life giving him lashes and bruising him. Also Mr Sowerberry might of influence him to act like a criminal by stealing and killing could send his life downhill becoming a spitting image of him , seeing things that 8 year old should not see at a young age.

Mr. Bumble brings humour through many funny actions such as the friendship between Mrs. Corney and him. That scene is a humorous which contrasts with life in the workhouse, but Dickens believes that humour gives a more moral understanding that horror could not produce.

I think that Charles Dickens describes and uses sympathy quite well starting from his birth not knowing his mum this creates sympathy because he doesn’t feel loved by anyone and also how he contrasts the upcoming horrible stages each incident had a meaning not knowing he thought know one like him or cared in the end reunited with his auntie.

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In my conclusion Oliver twist was brought to this world being hated and unloved the very few breaths he was born .Getting older wasn’t easier he forced to work and a saw things he shouldn’t have saw. Charles Dickens used Oliver to show the sympathy on the children should of got in the Victorian times because they were treated like slaves that was his message.


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