Ebenezer Scrooge under goes an amazing transformation in the book a Christmas Carol. Using relevant quotations and detailed reference to the text, trace and explain how and why Scrooge changed. Explain what Dickens is trying to convey to the readers through this transformation and the story in general. Charles Dickens wrote the book “A Christmas Carol” in 1843. It was first publish in a newspaper, in sections, leading up to Christmas. The story proved to be very popular. So popular that the next year, 1844,it was republished as a book.
This popularity is still constant to day, as it has been made into many films, which are shown every year at Christmas. It has also been adapted into many children’s’ stories, films, and books. The story was written to convey the concerns that Charles Dickens had about London at this time. The message was aimed at the middle class families of London. The message being that there were poor families around and they needed their help. It was no use to ignore them because that wouldn’t make them go away. Dickens did not like the way poor people in London were treated.
I think that by writing his novels show both richer families how poorer, less well off families live and it is a way for Dickens to release his emotional stress. When Dickens wrote “A Christmas Carol” he was already a famous writer. I think this fact helped the book to sell even more copies because people know that he is a good author so they will buy the book. Charles Dickens was a writer with a social conscience but sometimes he went too far with character ideas. Tiny Tim is an example of this in this book, Tim is critically ill but is as innocent and kind as a saint. This just did not seem real to me.
Dickens wrote several other books with similar themes. Sad stories with happy twists at the end seemed to prove quite popular. As Dickens wrote to support his family, I think he wrote what the buyers wanted to read. But this is not always the case as I feel that dickens also wrote to keep himself sane. Dickens put a lot of his own experiences into his writing and this was the only real way he told people about his life. As Charles was growing up his father was put into prison for not paying off his debt. So Charles was put to work in a blacking factory for a short time but the memory at the blacking factory haunted him all his life.
He only told his loved ones and friends about his brief stint in the blacking factory. But this dark memory became a source of creative power for Dickens. I admire Dickens because he never forgot his roots and did everything in his power to help the poor families of London. In 1829 Dickens became a free-lance reporter. After a successful number of career moves Dickens decided to become a full time novelists. Scrooge’s character at the beginning of the text was a very cold and grouchy old man. Scrooge’s character is mainly described using words linked with weather at Christmas. He showed no compassion to anyone at all.
“No warmth could warm” him. Scrooge was very cheep and “tight-fisted hand to the grindstone Scrooge”, he disliked spending money, infact he disliked manythings. Probably the only thing that Scrooge did like at this point in the story was saving and making money, “Scrooge liked the dark, it was cheep. ” Scrooge had no friends and he had a reputation for being a mean old man. Scrooge does not like poor families; he thinks they are a waste of space and time. When a couple of charity workers come round on Christmas eve to collect money for the less fortunate he asks if there are any work houses or prisons.
Ebenezer Scrooge hates holidays, especially Christmas. In fact Christmas was a “humbug” in Scrooge’s eyes, it was also an excuse to get drunk and not to work. When Scrooge walks down a street people ignored but he didn’t mind. I get the impression that at this point in the story Scrooge doesn’t even want to change. Scrooge treats Bob Cratchit, his employee, as his own property because this is how he sees him. Bob Cratchit is a husband and a father to many children. He needs money to support his large family not to mention his critically ill son Tim.
Scrooge knows about all this and still he refuses to give Bob a pay rise or even time off at Christmas. But it is not only Bob Cratchit who he mistreats. He also is mean to his nephew, Fred. Scrooge regards Fred as poor and foolish. He thinks this because Fred got married (I think Scrooge is secretly jealous about this), he is too happy and he gives away too much money. Scrooge never really talks to his nephew even though he is his only living relative. Scrooge lives in “chambers” that used to belong to his now dead partner Jacob Marley. “They were a gloomy suite of rooms”.
The building where Scrooge lived was so old that nobody lived there now, only him. All the other rooms were let out as offices. Scrooge’s living conditions remind me of him, old, dark and lonely. As Scrooge was coming home one evening he saw, or thought he saw the face of Jacob Marley in his doorknocker. This startled Scrooge as Marley had been dead at this point in the story for seven years. Little did Scrooge know that this was only the beginning. When Marleys ghost did appear, in chains, Scrooge was very sceptical. He didn’t want to believe that it was him. “You may be an un-digested bit of beef”.
This upset the ghost because the whole point of his visit was to warn Scrooge that if he carried on living the way he was, then when he died he would have to carry around a chain too. A long chain that he has forged in his life with “cashboxes, keys, padlocks, ledgers, deeds and heavy purses wrought in steel. ” I feel that Scrooge respected Marley when he was alive; he was probably one of the few people Scrooge ever has respected. Because of this fact, the message from Marleys ghost would have carried more weight. In life they both shared a common ground, business, and probably got on well together because of this I expect.