The Role of the Spirits in Convincing Scrooge That He Needs to Change

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In Charles Dickens’ ghost story ‘ A Christmas Carol’, we are shown the metamorphosis of a man named Scrooge, who was to begin with, a cold-hearted man who didn't care about anything except for money but than transformed into ‘…as good a friend, as good a master, and as good a man, as the good old city knew…’ Dickens uses the apparitions of ghosts to help Scrooge achieve this change in the novel. Among these ghosts are The Ghost Of Christmas Past, The Ghost of Christmas Present and the Ghost Of Christmas Yet To Come. This paper will explore how Dickens uses each of these mysterious spirits to persuade Scrooge that he needs to change. At the beginning of the novel, Scrooge is a cold-hearted, tight-fisted and greedy man, who despises Christmas and all things that give people happiness. This is exemplified when the donation collectors approach Scrooge expecting a donation to help the poor at Christmas. Scrooge is quick to decline, and he says ‘It’s not my business, it’s enough for a man to understand his own business, and not to interfere with others.’ A Christmas Carol takes us on a journey with this unconscionable man as we see his ethics and philosophy challenged, the way he has lived his life in the past, presently and how if he continues on this pathway, his life will unfold in the future. The few words in this quote, are enough to paint a clear picture of a selfish man who has no regard for others and justifies his stance with the excuse it is not my business. It is indubitably clear that at this point Scrooge regards himself as a man who has no philanthropic responsibility. The Ghost of Christmas Past is the first spirit to visit Scrooge. First this ghost takes Scrooge to see himself in the past when he a young schoolboy. Scrooge is shown that his father abandoned him at his boarding school, even during Christmas. This infers to Scrooge that the reason why he doesn’t socialize because he never experienced steady growth as a child in a strong family unit....
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