Continuous themes throughout A Christmas Carol (Responsibility ("…
Continuous themes throughout A Christmas Carol
Dickens creates a powerful positive message in this novella - everyone can change
"What's Christmas to you but a time... for finding yourself a year older, and not an hour richer"
Emphasises Scrooge's initial extreme attitudes and rejection of anything that doesn't make him money
Shows there is hope for all of us
Fred describes Christmas as a time where men and women "think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys"
"Mankind was my business"
Change of focus jolts us and Scrooge because we learn that life is not all about seeking financial success, but caring for others
"as a good man, as the good old city knew" - Scrooge learns to take responsibility for the poor, and in doing so redeem himself
Scrooge shows us what a wealthy man can do but Dickens shows what a small contribution (such as Fezziwig's) can do - "The happiness he gives, is quite as great if it cost a fortune"
Can make a significant difference to the lives of individuals
Ignorance and Want show the value of education for children
"Yellow, meagre, ragged, scowling, wolfish" - horrific in their appearance
They illustrate Dickens's belief in the power of and need of eduction
his use of emotive language show us how seriously he takes this issue of children lacking in education
"brave in ribbons" - symbol of her desperation - trying to make her dress appear new and respectable
"the rarest of all birds; a feathered phenomenon" - she can afford the ribbons and the family does have a Christmas goose
"Many thousands are in want of common necessities" - told by the charity collectors - Dickens gives us a brief glimpse that poverty is even deeper into society than the Cratchits
Dickens uses the supernatural to manipulate time and allow Scrooge to travel to his past, present and future - "Best and happiest of all, the Time before him was his own, to make amends in!"
"a lonely boy was reading near a feeble fire" - shows that Scrooge finds companionship in stories but as an adult he focuses on making money at the expense of personal relationships
When Scrooge becomes a second father to Tiny Tim, it means Scrooge gets some of the love and support he has been missing or refusing
The difference between Scrooge at the beginning and the end of the novella is because he rejoined society - "as good a man, as the good old city knew"
Dickens balances Scrooge's isolation with vibrant vignettes that show us the positive benefits of a close and loving family life
Dickens wants to show the impact small actions can have - "the boy from over the way, who was suspected of not having board enough from his master" - Party that Fezziwig holds; he reaches out to everyone