Greed? what is Greed?

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Updated: Mar 16, 2021
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Greed is intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power, power, or food(Merriam-Webster). Heavily talked about in the novel A Christmas Carol through the character Scrooge, who changes his whole perspective on life after he has some ghosts visit him. In In the novel A Christmas Carol, it is prime to know about the author and historical era so as to analyze the characterization and theme of the literary work.

The Industrial Revolution–what exactly is the Industrial Revolution one might ask. The Industrial Revolution was the change to the current manufacturing in Europe and the U.S. around 1760 to 1820 and 1840. It would have been tough to live during these times because of the loss of farming, the start of pollution, and the working conditions in factories. As vital as history for people to understand A Christmas Carol, you must also become familiar with them, Charles Dickens. In order to understand the meaning within a work of literature, it is key to have some understanding of both the author and the historical era of A Christmas Carol.

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The Industrial Revolution occurred from the 18th to 19th centuries, which was a main agrarian, rural society in Europe and America. Most people resided in small, rural communities where they mainly farmed. Life for them was difficult, as incomes were meager. Britain had many factors contributing to why it was the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. For example, it had great deposits of coal and iron ore, it provided essentials for the industrialization (Collins).

Transportation during this time underwent most transformation. Before the steam engine, raw materials and finished goods were hauled by horse wagons and boats. The The first steamboat was successfully built by the mid 19th century. Report became easy with the invention of the telegraph. In the 1860s, industrial workers were younger than 15.

Charles Dickens was a British novelist, journalist, editor, illustrator, and a social commentator who wrote the classic novels such as Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol, Nicholas Nickleby, and many more. Charles Dickens is remembered as one most important and influential writer of the 19th century. He was born on February 7, 1812 in Portsmouth England, United Kingdom and died on June 9, 1870 in Higham, Kent, United Kingdom. He died from having a stroke, but he left his final novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished (Collins).

1822, his family moved to Camden Town, a very poor town in London. His father was sent to prison for debt in 1824, when Dickens was only 12 years old. He and his wife, Catherine Hogarth, had ten children but he and his wife went their separate ways in 1858. In 1842, Dickens and his wife traveled to Italy and America on a tour. It was the greatest welcoming that any visitor had coming to America. After suffering a stroke, he died at the age of 58. He was also in a train accident and never fully recovered, but he still managed to tour (Collins).

DickensA Christmas Carol illustrates the opposite kind of moral transformation. One of the characters changes dramatically for not only himself but for the surrounding people, but of course this did not just happen in one night. The The story of the course is intimate. Scrooge is a ungenerous, selfish businessman who is forced to face reality of the life. Lacking of any meaningful human interaction, and traunt in human sympathy or compassion. The path this life will inevitably change if he does not. Understanding all the characters is key to following this story and how Scrooge changes as a person throughout the book becoming more warm-hearted and showing love, compassion, and sympathy.

In the first stave the reader meets some important characters like Scrooge’s nephew Fred, who Scrooge berates for his Christmas spirit, and the clerk Bob Cratchit, who works for Scrooge in the harsh cold conditions for very little pay. Scrooge is forced to reevaluate his ways when four ghosts come to visit him beginning with Bob Marley. Bob Marley was not only his best friend but his work partner; they both had the same outlook on life which is why Marley came back with all these heavy chains. The chains he claims he forged in life, a life spent in ignorance of the human need (Dougherty).

The ghost of Christmas past is another character who shows Scrooge good and bad images, like the part of his childhood where he was alone when other children went home for Christmas. He also shows a Christmas party at who was once his employer Fezziwig´s and Scrooge getting dumped by his lover Belle. Then he shows why Belle left Scrooge because she makes it clear that he has changed (Dougherty).

The emotional pull continues when the next character shows up, the Ghost of Christmas Present, and shows him images of the surrounding people exalting Christmas. It is at Cratchit’s house he seems most moved. Seeing how the family lives, making the best with the scarce amount of resources they live on, and interacting with one another with all this love and care really opens up Scrooge to start changing. Even though the Cratchits are less fortunate, they still seem to have the Christmas spirit spreading their love around; seeing this will change Scrooge as a character (Dougherty).

The next character is the Ghost of Christmas Future. Which shows Scrooge more painful images than the other ghosts, like the events of his solitary and lonely death as well as the sad home of the Cratchits upon Tiny Tim’s death (Dougherty).

Why is the theme so important one might ask. Theme plays a very important role in A Christmas Carol because it helps the reader really understand what goes on throughout the book. It also helps with understanding how the characters are connected in a way and how the theme gets the reader thinking and putting two and two together. The theme of A Christmas Carol is forgiveness, transformation, and compassion so when the reader reads the book they will have an understanding of book (Parfitt).

At the center of Dickens’ famous tale is the conflict between money and happiness. Scrooge judges the surrounding people based on their wealth and their monetary value. Money becomes associated with selfishness, bitterness, and greed. Dickens also points out the disparity between rich and poor whenever Scrooge refuses to donate money to the less fortunate. The theme of transformation is one big theme of this novel. From a young lonely boy to an embittered old man and then the challenge of him changing from a mean cold-hearted man to a person shows compassion and empathy (Parfitt).

Another theme one could look at is time. It is a very important, but somewhat difficult, theme. Scrooge is running out of time because he is old so his deceased friend Bob Marley comes back to warn him about changing his ways before it is too late. Also Tiny Tim is running out of time with his bad health as he is coming to an end with his life. For these characters to be saved, Scrooge must act quickly and make a decision to change his ways when the spirits are through showing his old life. As Scrooge has these interactions with the ghosts he learns the importance of his whole life instead of dwelling on the past and living entirely in the present (Parfitt).

In conclusion as the reader reads this novel, they will be able to see all these themes in the book from the transformation theme to theme of time. This will help the reader understand the book better catching these themes as they read along, thus, getting a better understanding of how the themes are vital to this novel.

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Greed? What is Greed?. (2021, Mar 16). Retrieved from