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CHARLES DICKENS - was born in Portsmouth

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                                               CHARLES   DICKENS

He was born in Portsmouth in 1812. He was only 12 when his father was imprisoned for debts and Dickens was forced to work in a factory to help the family out. This experience left a scar and the sufferings of his family became  subject matter for his novels. He began his writing career contributing a series of sketches to periodicals. These sketches were collected in a volume with the title of "Pickwick club" in 1837.

By now Dickens was launched as a popular writer and he began to write humorous, sentimental, historical and also novels of 424c21e social criticism, most of them concentrated on children such as "Oliver Twist", "David Copperfield" and "Hard Times"

He even found time to get involved in philanthropic activities, public readings of his works and amateur dramatics.



CHILDREN

He said that the phenomena of industrialisation brought the plight of young children and their exploitation.

Right from the earliest times, children had been used by their parents and the community in the cottage industries, but it had never been considered a problem. With the creation of factories  where there were great concentrations of children working in sub human conditions, the problem was no longer avoidable.

.

Dickens is, without doubt, one of the best known English novelists. He created a whole world of

people and did not restrict himself to one particular social class. He did not write about the richest members of the society, he preferred to write about the upper middle class through the lower middle class and working class to the most unfortunate members of society.

His enormous popularity was certainly due to the fact that he was seriously interested in the welfare of the masses and determined to bring to notice the social problems of the period. He attacked the evils and abuses of his day.

In Oliver Twist, for example, he turned his attention to the Poor Law, to child labour, to the exploitation of young children.

In David Copperfield  the experiences of the Micawbers are an effective denunciation of the laws and child labour comes under attack.

HARD TIMES , not only illustrated the influence of the Utilitarian doctrine and how it suppresses the spiritual and creative side of human nature but also offered a cutting attack on the inhumanity of an industrial and materialistic society.

Though Dickens' popularity refused to accept the evils of Victorian society, he was not a revolutionary. He believed that social improvement could be achieved by benevolence, by fellow-feeling and human solidarity.

From Hard Times: "Facts"

 In this passage there is a man, the governor of a factory, who is talking to a teacher and his master in front of a class about education from his point of view. What he intends to insist is that only 'facts' had to be taught to the children, because only they count in life. They will be very useful to those students. That is the principle on which he grows his own children up and that is the principle on which the students have to be grown up too. The funniest thing is that the author gives a careful description of the way of acting and of the clothes and of the movements of the man enlightening about his idea of the autorianism and materialism and the stupid type of education he wants to realize.

', Ora, ciò che voglio, sono fatti. Insegnate a questi ragazzi e a queste ragazze  nient'altro che fatti. Contano solo i fatti nella vita. Non piantate nient'altro, e crescerà qualsiasi cosa. Potete formare le menti degli animali ragionanti solo con i fatti. Niente altro sarà mai utile a  loro. Questo è il principio con cui tiro su i miei figli e questo è il principio con cui educherò questi ragazzi: attenetevi ai fatti, signore!'




La scena aveva luogo in una semplice, monotona classe senza pretese, e il dito indice di chi parlava enfatizzava le sue osservazioni  sottolinenando ogni frase con una riga sulla manica dell'insegnante. L'enfasi veniva sottolineata dalla parete quadrata della fronte, che aveva per base le sopracciglia, mentre gli occhi trovavano ampio posto in due oscure cavità ombreggiate dalla parete. Veniva sottolineata anche dalla bocca di chi parlava, che era larga, sottile e dura. E anche dalla voce, che era inflessibile, secca e didattoriale. E dai capelli , ispidi ai lati della sua testa calva, una piantagione di abeti per tenere il vento dalla superficie splendente,  nodosa come la crosta di un budino di prugne, come se la testa avesse poco spazio per i difficili fatti immagazzinati all'interno. L'atteggiamento ostinato, il cappotto squadrato, le gambe squadrate, le spalle squadrate -  e ancora, il suo foulard, portato per la gola  stretto in malo modo, -  determinato ad aiutare l'enfasi. ' in questa vita, noi vogliamo solo fatti, signore, nient'altro che fatti!'

Chi parlava e l'insegnante e la terza persona adulta presente, tutti si appoggiavano un po' e  percorsero con gli occhi il piano inclinato di piccoli recipienti qua e arrangiati con ordine, pronti per avere imperiosi galloni di fatti versati dentro fino ad esserne pieni fino all'orlo.

 







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