The Class System Of The Victorian Era English Literature Essay

September 19, 2017 English Literature

Great Expectations, a fresh written by Charles Dickens during the Victorian epoch. This novel was set in early Victorian England at a clip when great societal alterations were taking topographic point. During the late eighteenth and 19th century, the Industrial Revolution had transformed the societal landscape, leting industrialists and makers to roll up immense lucks that would otherwise hold been unaccessible. Aside from the political and economic alteration which occurred, a profound societal alteration took topographic point. The public seeking to break their lives, sought after employment in newly-formed industries. During this epoch, the society was categorized into three categories: upper, center, and lower category and this system was the called the societal category system. In Charles Dickens ‘s Great Expectations, the category system played an of import function. These categories and the differences between them were clear in the interaction of the characters and in the secret plan of novel. Dickens had a negative position of this system, where the upper category is almighty, the in-between category consists of those covetous of the upper category, and the lower category who are unable to win due to their birth position. Charles Dickens was portion of this epoch, he sprung from the lower in-between category, and exhaustively acquainted with the life of the hapless. Most of Dickens ‘s novels were shaped by the events that were taking topographic point during that clip. Throughout his novel, Dickens emphasizes the difference between visual aspect and world through Pip ‘s outlooks of something better, societal position, and scenes in the book.

In the beginning of the novel, Pip sees Satis house, which puts him into a province of head of wanting to be a affluent gentleman. In this novel, Pip desires moral self-improvement and is really tough on himself when he feels that he acts amorally, by seeking to move better in the hereafter. This can be notices when Pip wants societal self-reformation, after holding fallen in love with Estella, who demands him to move harmonizing to high society. Estella treated Pip really harshly because of their differences in societal category, her being upper category miss and him being a working category male child. “ He calls the rogues, knuckleboness, this male child! said Estella with contempt, before our first game was out. ‘And what coarse custodies he has! And what thick boots! ” ( Dickens 59 ) Estella is cold and contemptuous, knocking Pip ‘s low societal category and his unprocessed manners when he plays a game of cards with Estella at Miss Havisham ‘s house. Second, when Pip leaves for London and is disappointed with his behavior towards Biddy and Joe. His phantasies of going a gentleman are farther stimulated by Mrs. Joe and Pumblechook. When Magwitch, the inmate goes to see Pip, Pip is ashamed of the inmate and did non desire to be associated with a member of the lower category. Pip referred to Magwitch as his “ awful visitant ” and was embarrassed of his coarse manners and visual aspect. ( Dickens 326 )

Another illustration of how Dickens criticizes the category system during the Victorian is, in chapter 27 when Joe comes to see Pip, Pip treats Joe in a different manner than earlier because Joe was from a lower societal category. His feelings about Joe ‘s reaching were: “ Not with pleasance… I had the sharpest sensitivity as to his being seen by Drummle. ” ( Dickens 203 ) He was afraid that Drummle will look down on him because of Joe ‘s lower category. Not merely does Pip handle Joe otherwise, Joe besides treats Pip otherwise because of their difference in societal category. He begins to name Pip “ sir ” which bothered him because “ sir ” was the rubric given to people of higher category. Joe leaves and explains his early departure, “ Pip, dear old fellow, life is made of of all time so many farewells welded together, as I may state, and one adult male ‘s a blacksmith, and one ‘s a whitesmith, and one ‘s a goldworker, and one ‘s a coppersmith. Divisions among such must come… ” ( Dickens 223 ) He creates this metaphor than he is a common blacksmith and Pip is a goldworker. So, this is another illustration of how Dickens criticizes the societal category system. Other characters that were besides judged by their societal category were Magwitch and Compeyson. They were both on test for the same offense but Compeyson got away easier than Magwitch because of his higher societal category. The stoping of the test was entirely based upon societal category system.

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Throughout the novel, Dickens explores the category system of Victorian England, runing from the condemnable Magwitch, to the hapless provincials Joe and Biddy, to the in-between category of Pumblechook, and eventually to the rich Miss Havisham. These categories and the differences between them were clear in the interaction of the characters and in the secret plan of novel. Dickens had a negative position of this system, where the upper category is almighty ; the in-between category consists of those covetous of the upper category, and the lower category who are unable to win due to their birth position. Peoples were categorized into categories and this was indispensable throughout the narrative, since Pip realizes that wealth and category are less important than love, trueness, and interior worth. The most of import fact to be remembered about the post-industrial revolution category system is that Dickens ignores the aristocracy and nobility in favor of the chief subject of this novel: aspiration. The societal category system that existed during the Victorian epoch caused a division between people. This difference in societal category had brought upon separation between characters in the novel like Pip, Estella, Magwitch, Miss Havisham and Joe.

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