A CHRISTMAS CAROL - REDEMPTION (THE CHANGE (The Ghosts come to Scrooge to…
A CHRISTMAS CAROL - REDEMPTION
IN THE NOVEL
Arguably the main focus of the novel
Tension throughout the novel centres around whether Scrooge can change his selfish, miserable ways and redeem himself and his actions
Almost impossible to envision Scrooge changing in Chapter One
He is portrayed very negatively and as a misanthropist
"Nobody ever stopped him in the street to say, with gladsome looks, "My dear Scrooge, how are you?"
"No eye at all is better than an evil eye, dark master"
Dickens goes out of his way to show that Scrooge is avoided and misanthropic
This attitude is further shown in his response to poverty
"If they would rather die.".. "they better do it and decrease the surplus population"
"It's enough for a man to understand his own business, and not to interfere with other people's"
Dickens' is perhaps arguing that anyone can redeem themselves, regardless of their attitude or behaviour
ALLEGORY - Dickens wanted the whole of society at the time to change their ways - to take responsibility for the poor and the less fortunate
THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PAST
Scrooge's past show the reader that he was not always miserable and lonely
We see his relationship with Fan and Belle
There's an indication that he is capable of loving relationships
"She clapped her hands and laughed again, and tried to touch his head; but being too little, laughed again, and stood on tiptoe to embrace him"
As a reader, we are forced to wonder about the younger Scrooge.
If he used to value relationships and love, we can hold onto the idea that he may be capable of relationships and love again
Scrooge's own Father changes and foreshadows how Scrooge will change at the end of the novella
There was a suggestion that his father was harsh, as Fan says he was
"so much kinder than he used to be"
Marley is used to begin the transformation and road to redemption
He explains why he wears "chains"- it is because he couldn't change the way he was in life
Marley is similar to Scrooge - he is trying / willing to help Scrooge change and this then applies to the reader that here is hope for Scrooge
"Mankind was my business"
"Not to know that no space of regret can make amends for one's life opportunity misused
"I made it link by link of my own free will"
Which enforces the idea that all choices made affect us in life and beyond the grave
"charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were all my business"
The Ghosts come to Scrooge to show him a range of different visions
They do not force Scrooge to change as the change must come from within
He quickly begins to see the error of his ways
"Scrooge exclaimed, "I cannot bear it!"
"I learnt a lesson which is working now"
"Tonight, if you aught to teach me, let me profit by it"
"Men's courses will foreshadow certain ends, to which, if perserved in, must lead"
But if the course be departed from, the courses will change"
"I am not the man I was"
"I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all year"
"I will not shut out the lessons that they teach"
PURPOSE OF THE NOVELLA - Dickens wanted to show how self-serving people in society can be transformed into caring and socially aware members of society
Moral lessons can contribute to change
Generosity can overcome Scrooge's bitterness as he encounters and learns from his past
He learns how to emphasise with people, especially those less fortunate
The past reminds Scrooge of a time when he was emotionally connected to other people
The vision of fear of his own death acts as a climax to the moral lessons learned
"sponge away the writings on the stone"
MISANTHROPIST - dislikes others