In current times, it is evident that a writer will use characters that stick out from the norm in some way. They may have a stereotypical background, but the character's story has some type of content that will set them apart from the rest. Some of these unique characteristics may be a superhuman ability such as telekinesis, a family problem such as drug addicts, or a social problem such as anxiety. These types of characters have been glorified time after time.
In contrast, there are characters like Pip from Great Expectations that have that typified type of lifestyle. As a matter of fact, Pip is the epitome of a typified low-class child. In Great Expectations, Charles Dickens makes a bold attempt at showing his feeling towards the bourgeois and beyond of London in the early 1600s. Pip is a "rags-to-riches" boy that has great expectation in life. But later on he finds out that his almighty expectations are nothing but a meek overshot of the life he once dearly longed for.
A classic feature of a low-class child would be fear. As the novel opens, Pip is in the marshes and is confronted by a ruffian convict. He is quickly threatened by the escaped man and immediately questioned about himself. The convict asks him things about his family, and what he can do to help him escape. Pip is nearly paralyzed with fear. A typical wealthier person would have had a snotty attitude about the whole situation, retorting with things like, "Do you know who I am?" or, "Get your grubby hands off of me before I have you arrested." With wealth comes confidence; adversely, with destituteness comes insecurity.
It seems Dickens was aiming to convey a sense of poverty in Pip. He is apparently...