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A christmas carol essay please mark????

Starting with this extract, explore how far Dickens presents Christmas as a joyful time. (30 marks)

Throughout Dickens’ allegorical novella, his aim is to passionately highlight how such a joyful season can create positive role models for Scrooge. The constant succession of images relating to joy around Christmas may well have been utilised to demonstrate how readers too can learn and improve from the inspirational characters during the novella.

Primarily, within stave 1 of the novella, Dickens utilises the characterisation of Fred as the embodiment of the Christmas spirit with all the positive virtues associated with Christmas. This is evidenced when Fred is described as coming in ‘all in a glow’ with ‘his face ruddy and handsome; his eyes sparkled.’ Here the use of the noun ‘glow’ connotes light and warmth which is strongly linked to hope and purity. This highlights the contrast between Fred and his uncle Scrooge, who was described as ‘hard and sharp as flint.’ Structurally, introducing Fred immediately after Scrooge focuses the reader’s attention on the clear variation between the two and all of the positive qualities that Scrooge lacks. Furthermore, Fred highlights the belief that Christmas is a time for unity within the social hierarchy although it ‘never puts a scrap of gold or silver’ in his pocket and he frowns upon his uncle, completely consumed in the greed for money. Dickens may have done this to foreshadow Scrooge’s transformation into a better man as a result of the inspirational role models around him during the novella. Alternatively, Dickens may have used Fred and Scrooge together to challenge the situation in Victorian Britain during the Industrial Revolution. Scrooge highlights all of the negative traits of upper class men during this time and Fred is a caring and benevolent character, who cares for people lower down on the social hierarchy.

Secondly, within the extract, Dickens utilises the characterisation of Fezziwig to suggest a clear contrast in the two employers. This is evidenced when Fezziwig ‘laughed all over himself, from his shoes to his organ of benevolence.’ The use of the abstract noun ‘benevolence’ suggests the joy and love Fezziwig has for Christmas time. Fezziwig’s kind, caring personality is another role model and catalyst for Scrooge’s transformation. Furthermore, Dickens presents Christmas as a joyful time through Fezziwig’s Christmas party. ‘Fuel was heaped upon the fire’ and the warehouse was transformed into a ‘snug, and warm’ ballroom filled with light. The use of the adjective ‘warm’ connotes kindness and comfort. The detail here in Fezziwig’s scene overwhelms the senses; his generosity is physical, emotional and palpable. As an employer he is the foil of Scrooge and presents all of the positive virtues that Scrooge lacks. Dickens may have done this to highlight a different side to capitalism. Alternatively, presenting Fezziwig as the embodiment of Christmas suggests the importance of Christmas and all of its positive qualities on everyone in society.

Thirdly, within the novella, Dickens utilises the Ghost of Christmas Present to personify Christmas itself. When the ghost appears it has set up an impressive feast of lights and food. This is evidenced when Scrooge’s room is filled with ‘the crisp leaves of holly, mistletoe and ivy reflected back the light, as if so many little mirrors had been scattered there, and such a mighty blaze went roaring up the chimney.’ The scene is hyperbolic and creates a clear contrast with the frugal state of Scrooge’s past Christmases. The use of the light imagery here provides a clear and undeniable tableau of the joyful Christmases Scrooge can afford but chooses to shun. Dickens may have done this to portray Christmas as a bright and familiar celebration which everyone should celebrate in harmony. A modern reader may feel hope that Scrooge will use his wealth to celebrate Christmas with all of the festivities that Christmas should include and celebrate it with the people that care for him, like his nephew Fred.

Finally, in ‘A Christmas Carol’ Dickens reinforces the theme of Christmas spirit through the Cratchit family. Dickens utilises Bob Cratchit to symbolise the true spirit of Christmas and the importance of family. This is evidenced at the Cratchit’s dinner where nobody remarked that it was ‘a small pudding for a large family’. The adjective ‘small’ emphasises the Cratchit’s lack of luxury and yet their enthusiasm in the scene is palpable. This highlights that this ‘small’ pudding was seen as an indulgence to them which is something Scrooge takes for granted. Furthermore, the Cratchit’s ‘four roomed house’ is filled with an overwhelming sense of energy and excitement, which exists as an antithesis of Scrooge’s ‘old…dreary’ abode. This is evidenced as the youngest Cratchit children ‘danced about the table’ this suggests the sense of energy despite their lowly status in society on this festive day. Dickens may have done this to suggest the importance of Christmas to all members of society. Although the Cratchit family are less fortunate than Scrooge or Fred their Christmas is filled with the love they have for each other. A reader may feel delighted to see this family enjoying Christmas day, contented with what they own and hope that Scrooge will see this family as a role model for his transformation.
I would give this around the 28 mark area as you could delve deeper with connotations or zoom into words and there meanings.but really good overall.
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Original post by obsessive-humori
I would give this around the 28 mark area as you could delve deeper with connotations or zoom into words and there meanings.but really good overall.

thank you so much

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