In Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol” Ebenezer Scrooge changes from a bitter old man to a good person through the help of the ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet to come. When Scrooge was a young man he was kind, nice and good person. However, Scrooge slowly changes from towards a more miserly direction the more wealthy he becomes. At the start of the story Scrooge is a bitter old man who is obsessed with money, completely shuts himself of from society and has a strong hatred for Christmas time and anything Christmas related. Slowly with the help of the Jacob Marley and the ghosts of Christmas past, preset, and yet to come, Scrooge changes back to a good person. When Scrooge was a boy he was a good kid. Scrooge was often abandoned by his father, who was a violent alcoholic, and his friends around Christmas time when everyone went home except for him. As a result of his abandonment he does not feel for fellow humans becoming cold hearted. These are the first of his bad memories that occurred around Christmas time. As a young man apprenticed to a banker Scrooge was still good but the more success he got the more obsessed with money he became. His obsession grew until he was engaged and kept postponing the wedding until he felt he was financially successful enough which his fiancée realized would be never. Because of this she left him. This along with his beloved sister’s death proceeded to cut Scrooge off from society to the way he is at the start of the novel.
At the beginning of the story Scrooge is an old man now totally obsessed with money and completely cut off from society. Since Scrooge had cut himself away from society he is very disliked. For example, when Scrooge is walking home from work everyone keeps their distance from him and no one engages in any sort of conversation with him either. Scrooge goes home to a lonely house. Scrooge also refers to his clerks taking off on Christmas “A poor excuse of picking a mans pocket every year”.
When Scrooge gets home from work on Christmas eve he is greeted with the ghost of his old friend Jacob Marley. Marley tells him that three ghosts will be coming to him to change him and save him from a terrible fate. The first ghost to come is the ghost of Christmas past. This ghost brings Scrooge to all the places of his childhood so he can witness his change from the good young man he used to be to the man he is now. These images of what he sees have an effect on Scrooge as he sees the wrong of some of his actions and he is hurt by many of the others showing remorse for the way things turned out. The next ghost to come is the ghost of Christmas present. This ghost further shows how Scrooge is disliked by the public by showing Scrooge’s nephew getting a good laugh out of Scrooge because he is so widely hated. It also shows Bob Cratchit, Scrooge’s clerk, having his family’s nice Christmas dinner partially ruined at the mere mention of Scrooges name. Cratchit also has a sickly young son who Cratchit cannot afford to pay medical bills for when Scrooge (already showing that some change has occurred) asks if the boy will live the ghost responds with what Scrooge said before of why Scrooge should care because the boy is part of the ”excess population”. Hearing these statements makes Scrooge feel sick about what he said. The next ghost to visit Scrooge is the ghost of Christmas yet to come. This ghost shows a future where people are very happy to find out that Scrooge is dead. Some of the people who are happy are a young couple who were being ruthlessly pursued by Scrooge for a debt they owe to him. Scrooge is shocked that no one is affected in a negative way by his death and when shown his gravestone he says to the ghost “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all year. I will live in the Past, Present, and the Future. The spirits of all three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. Oh tell me I may sponge the writing on this stone.” This line shows the complete change of Scrooge back to the good kind boy from his youth. In Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” Ebenezer Scrooge changes from a bitter old man to a good person through the help of the ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet to come. Scrooge starts as a good young boy but changes to the terrible person he is slowly through his life. Scrooge is an absolutely terrible person who is totally obsessed with money. Scrooge slowly changes with the help of the three spirits and becomes a good person again.