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Hard times by charles dickens 2 essay

  • A self-made man, Bounderby demeans his family, claiming to have escaped an abusive childhood through his wits alone;
  • Another greatly developed value of Dickens in this book is religious values in humanity and their attachment to the importance of femininity or, as it was called at the time, the female emancipation;
  • Dickens makes it clear that he believes that facts alone will not enable Bounderby or the other town officials to get beyond their class prejudices and identify the real thief;
  • Facts can no longer the only thing in life.

While all of the characters in this novel are flawed or damaged because of the changes brought about by the Industrial Revolution, Dickens holds Josiah Bounderby in the greatest contempt. In him, Dickens embodies the worst characteristics of the middle class: A self-made man, Bounderby demeans his family, claiming to have escaped an abusive childhood through his wits alone.

While it makes for a heartrending story, Dickens eventually exposes Bounderby as a fraud.

  1. The Gradgrind children—Louisa, her younger brother, Tom, and their siblings—are raised and educated by a father who prizes the utilitarian values of reason at the expense of the imagination, a system that encourages the fostering of intellect but not the nurturing of the human heart. The second struggle is between the classes is illustrated between Stephen Blackpool and Bounderby.
  2. In Louisa he portrays the emotionally destructive influence of the aforementioned. By this time Gradgrind has become a more emotional man, torn down by the constant failure in life by his own children.
  3. As the novel progresses, so does the attitude of Gradgrind.
  4. Even his name suggests that he is a very poor "bridge" between the workers and the owners.
  5. He also hints at the idea of equality between the sexes and also the development of a better human morality.

Rather than having been abandoned as a child, Bounderby actually grew up in a loving, comfortable home. In fact, Bounderby seems to think that love is just another acquisition, something he can have if he has the money to buy it.

GCSE: Hard Times

This is his attitude as he pursues Louisa Gradgrind to be his wife. The Gradgrind children—Louisa, her younger brother, Tom, and their siblings—are raised and educated by a father who prizes the utilitarian values of reason at the expense of the imagination, a system that encourages the fostering of intellect but not the nurturing of the human heart. By some standards, it could be argued that Mr. Gradgrind has provided well for his family; however, when it comes to love, compassion, and supportive understanding—those things that Dickens sees as essential—the Gradgrind family appears much less blessed than either the mill workers or the economically disadvantaged—but loving—group of circus people, who provide Sissy Jupe with her extended family.

Essay/Term paper: Hard times

Dickens clearly reviles a system such as the one practiced in Mr. Dickens begins his story of Coketown with a scene depicting the visit of a government inspector to Mr.

  • Blackpool is a worker for Bounderby;
  • During this time in history, there was a conflict of power going on;
  • Thomas Gradgrind, the father of Louisa, Tom, and June not only stresses facts in the classroom in which he teaches, but also at home to his family;
  • Atmosphere thick with smoke and soot 2.

When Sissy Jupe, a child from the local circus, defines a horse in an imaginative way, Mr. In this simple scene, Dickens sets the stage for the key issue he explores in this novel: Even more so than Mr. Bounderby is a strong proponent of the importance of reason over emotion, and he offers himself as an example to his apprentice, young Tom Gradgrind.

However, it is not Tom whom Bounderby and others blame for the theft, but Stephen Blackpool, an honest but poor mill hand.

Hard Times Critical Evaluation - Essay

Dickens makes it clear that he believes that facts alone will not enable Bounderby or the other town officials to get beyond their class prejudices and identify the real thief: Hard Times offers ironic commentary at every turn, as, for example, in the deep regard for each other shared by Stephen and another mill hand, Rachel.

When Stephen momentarily has a chance to free himself from the burden of his half-mad, estranged, alcoholic wife by overdosing her on some medication, it is Rachel who unselfishly stays his hand, even though doing so prevents the two of them from marrying. In brutal contrast stands the wealthy, selfish James, whose very name is loaded with irony.

  1. The city is polluted, ugly, monotonous, and unhealthy A. He shows from the start that the education system is based on "fact" and not "fancy.
  2. Therefore, pounds facts into his children. In this simple scene, Dickens sets the stage for the key issue he explores in this novel.
  3. Tom is another example of the damages of Factual education.
  4. Is not put off by his fine, gentlemanly airs 4.
  5. While it makes for a heartrending story, Dickens eventually exposes Bounderby as a fraud. This extremely powerful quote shows absolutely all the possible detrimental effects it has on a person, all converged into one person, which in itself heightens the pity and sympathy.

When he grows attracted to the now married Louisa, James thinks nothing of pursuing her, nor does he mind losing her after his plot is discovered. All of the principal characters are broken, isolated within themselves, or dead. Worse, however, is that he must live with the knowledge that his wrongheadedness has denied Louisa a loving husband and children.