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London Fog analysis

By barretoc0822 Feb 24, 2014 458 Words

Tim Goodwin and Charles Dickens both describe the toll the London Fog took on the city in contrasting manners. Their selections varied in style, purpose and organizations giving them both different tones. Goodwin took an informational approach with his writing. However, Dickens was very elaborate and descriptive using a lot of imagery within his writing. Goodwin and Dickens used different styles and purposes to demonstrate the effects the fog had on London and its people.

First, both authors illustrate their purposes very differently with their dictions and manipulation of language. Goodwin utilizes an informational approach by using statistical data and scientific facts in his diction especially when he says, “322 tons of solid matter per square mile.” Furthermore, he identifies the “4000 deaths” caused by the fog. Goodwin’s selection takes a cause and effect approach by explaining the fog and then stating, “The Clean Air Act was passed in 1956.” On the contrary, Dickens uses a more poetic approach with descriptive diction. He says, “Where it flows among green aits and meadows”, demonstrating his purpose is to describe the fog unlike Goodwin’s that strictly has facts. Dickens continues by saying, “the fog is everywhere “and hanging in the misty clouds.” Although, both authors use different ways to express their purpose they both show the devastating effects of the fog.

Secondly, Dickens and Goodwin utilize figurative language and their organization to establish different styles within their writing. Dickens has a more poetic style and he incorporates personification which brings the fog to life around us, while Goodwin uses statistical and scientific diction forming an informational style. Dickens personifies the fog and says, “[the] fog creeping into the cabooses” and “[the] fog cruelly pinching the toes and fingers.” This personification paints a vivid picture of the fog making it seem like it’s a malicious creature of the night. However, Goodwin’s informational style is demonstrated throughout as he uses factual language such as, “smoky atmosphere” and “18 per cent less sunshine than the inner suburbs.” Goodwin and Dickens’ styles vary, but have lasting effects by putting a vivid picture of the fog in the reader’s mind.

Finally, Goodwin and Dickens’ selections differ greatly in style and their composition, but convene to justify the devastating effects of the London fog. Goodwin organizes his selection in a cause and effect manner explaining the cause of the fog and the effect being a Clean Air Act being passed. Dickens uses another approach by organizing his selection in a descriptive form painting a vivid image on the effects of the fog and how it impacted the people in London. As a result, both writers portray the fog with different styles and techniques to show one purpose and make a lasting impression on the reader.

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