Christmas Carol’, look closely at the language used and how this influences the reader
In 1843 Charles dickens wrote ‘A Christmas Carol’ partly to make people aware of the terrible conditions of the children of the poor.
In 1843 he visited the field lane ragged school and was appalled by what he saw there/ ragged schools catered for the very poorest, hungry children who roamed the streets, trying to teach them the basic skills of reading and writing. He had also been shocked by a parliamentary report by the children’s employment commission. Dickens was the most popular novelist of the day and he soon realized that far more people would take notice of the terrible conditions of the poor if he wrote about them in a story.
‘A Christmas carol’ was published on 17th December 1843 and by the
24th he had sold 6,000 copies. Dickens called it a most prodigious success., the greatest, I think, have ever achieved.
‘A Christmas carol’ is still widely read today and appears in many versions including illustrated re-telling of the story for young children. Hardly a Christmas goes by without a version of ‘A Christmas carol’ appearing on TV in one form or another. The name of the main character, scrooge, has come into general use in the English language meaning ‘a miserly or mean person’.
In ‘A Christmas carol’ Dickens shows scrooge as an evil, nasty man by using a long list of adjectives, he’s described with this sentence
“Oh! But he was a tight fisted hand at the grindstone, scrooge! A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and as solitary as an oyster” Another way to show this is the way he talks to people, e.g. when his nephew invites him to his Christmas party but he turns him down and calls Christmas a