Charles John Huffam Dickens was a nineteenth century English novelist. He wrote many novels such as, The Pickwick Papers, the very famous Oliver Twist, The Mystery Of Edwin Drood, although he sadly passed away whilst writing this, and of course, A Christmas Carol! In A Christmas Carol, Dickens created many characateurs. One of them being Ebenezer Scrooge. If you were to think of the name Scrooge you would maybe think of it as a harsh, mean, nasty, cruel or evil type of name.
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Well that’s exactly what Scrooge was. He was all of those things, and more.
Although Scrooge was an extremely wealthy man he was greedy, cold hearted and self centred. Dickens managed to put this across to his audience by describing Scrooge as, ” a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner. ” This description of Scrooge is very accurate. All of these adjectives show how he was ‘tight’ with his money, how he didn’t care about the poor, how, although he wasn’t spending much of his money, wouldn’t give away a penny to a single sole.
His cruelness is also portrayed by saying “If they would rather die, they had better do it!
” This quote shows that Scrooge really couldn’t care less about the poor. His employees were made to work exceptionally hard, day in day out. Also, if they worked overtime, they certainly didn’t get a pay rise. Scrooge was definitely not the type of man to give out money of his own free will. Throughout the story the audience could see how very slowly Scrooge started to change. He started to see things from a different angle. Literally! Round about the middle of the book, Scrooge is visited by three different ghosts. The Ghost of Christmas Past, The Ghost of Christmas Present and The Ghost of Christmas Future.
Each of these ‘spirits’ showed Scrooge his past, present and also his future. The time that really hit Scrooge the most, was the present. Especially when he saw just how his worker, Bob Cratchitt, coped with a large family and a very small amount of money. Bob Cratchitt had worked for Scrooge for a very long time on a weekly salary of fifteen shillings a week. This money had to feed and clothe his wife, his two daughters Martha and Belinda, his son Peter, his two younger children (boy and girl), and also Tiny Tim (who was a cripple).
As The Ghost of Christmas Present took Scrooge to a scene, in which he thought impossible, Scrooge’s feelings towards life started to change rather dramatically. The scene was of the Cratchitt Family sitting down to a homemade Christmas dinner. Scrooge noted each and every face and realised they were all beaming with delight. The thing he couldn’t get round his head was, how on earth was this family so happy with as little money, clothing, food and general everyday needs that they had? How can such a large family live like this? How does Bob’s salary look after his family and help to keep them healthy?
Scrooge then realised that the keyword in this complete scene was indeed, “family”. Something Scrooge had never had. He felt hurt by this, like he had thrown away his life. He had given up on himself and his family, all for money. The Cratchitt’s represented a warm, loving family relationship who, whether they had money or not, could live off love, and love alone. At this point Scrooge’s heart seemed to be filled with warmth, as he peered in through the window of the Cratchitt’s house. Although he still wasn’t yet fully convinced that he could be a better man.
By asking the ghost if the cripple in the corner, Tiny Tim, would die, the ghost replied, yes eventually. As hurt as Scrooge was, believing he could never be part of a love filled room with his family, he said, “If he be like to die he had better do it and decrease the surplus population. ” We now see Scrooge’s opinion on life starting to change. As Scrooge is starting to warm to the idea of becoming a better man, he is shown his future. This consists of his death and also his lonely tombstone. Scrooge doesn’t want to end up like that. He wants people to remember him for the good.
Not the bad. A chance is given to Scrooge, so he can change things, so he can right the wrongs, which have occurred in his past life. Throughout A Christmas Carol, we see Scrooge change from “a moody, selfish, depressed, money-grabbing, greedy old man” to a man who is “as happy as an angel, as merry as a school boy, as light as a feather and he seems as giddy as a drunken man”. It seems to me Scrooge really has changed for the better. He’s a lot more sensitive, a lot more generous and certainly a kinder, friendlier and an all round happier man.