Great Expectations

Author: Charles Dickens

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A Christmas Carol

Charles Dickens

It tells the story of a greedy and selfish man named Ebenezer Scrooge and his transformation after being visited by a series of ghosts on Christmas Eve.

The book was written and published during the Victorian era, a time when there was great nostalgia for the old Christmas traditions and new traditions were being introduced such as Christmas trees and greeting cards.

Dickens’ inspirations for writing the novel seem to be many and varied, but the main ones are the sad and humiliating experiences of his childhood, his sympathy for the poor, and several Christmas stories and fairy tales.

Oliver Twist

Charles Dickens

With Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens starts the literature dedicated especially to teenagers.

With a strong autobiographical component, this novel tells the adventures of a child who must cope in an inhospitable world, where both goodness and evil are daily bread; but it also shows that if you have solid ethical principles, it is possible to reverse the misfortune and achieve better living conditions.

A beautiful and sensitive story, whose characters reflect the social problems present in all times. Oliver Twist is considered one of the most important novels of the 19th century and a classic of English literature.

David Copperfield

Charles Dickens

The book is the narrative of David, from his birth to his death, and of those around him, for better or for worse.

The story is told almost entirely from the point of view of a first-person narrator, David Copperfield himself, and it was the first Dickens novel to do so. Since its publication in installments between 1849 and 1850, David Copperfield, the “favorite son” of its author, has left nothing but a trail of admiration, joy, and gratitude.

It was Sigmund Freud’s favorite novel. Kafka imitated it in Amerika and Joyce parodied it in Ulysses. For Cesare Pavese, “in these unforgettable pages each of us (I can’t think of any greater praise) finds his own secret experience”.

A Tale of Two Cities

Charles Dickens

This novel is a classic of 19th century English literature. It deals in parallel with the realities of England and of a revolutionary France.

Taking the French revolution as a point of reference, Dickens shows the social and political problems of England, fearing that history would repeat itself in his native country when he was writing this novel.

In the contrast of these two cities presented, England is presented as the confidence, the tranquility, the assured future, while France becomes more and more dangerous as the novel progresses. The acts of violence carried out by the French people are among the most memorable scenes in the book. Dickens rejects revolutionary violence in its two forms, both in its popular form, by the masses, and in its institutionalized form such as terror.

Bleak House

Charles Dickens

Bleak House, represents for Chesterton the highest point of intellectual maturity of Dickens, his central work.

Esther Summerson, abandoned at birth by her parents, is the ward of John Jarndyce, a powerful gentleman with a good heart who has been fighting for years over an inheritance. Esther has lived at Jarndyce’s residence, Bleak House, since she was eighteen, along with Ada and Richard, John’s teenage cousins, orphaned and homeless because of the disputed inheritance, whom he tries to guide in life.

The novel revolves around the biographical avatars of Esther -whose first-person story is interspersed with that of the narrator- always struggling to find her identity, overcome her origins and succeed socially.