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Research paper topic: Charles Dickens - 1014 words
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.. nd his wish to secure a steady income independent of his literary creativity made him plan several ventures in the 1840's. This return to journalism soon proved a great mistake, the biggest fiasco in a career that included nearly no misdirections or failures. He then moved onto a more limited but happier exercise of his talents, for more than a decade he directed a reformatory home for young female delinquents, which was financed by a wealthy friend Angela Burrdett-Coutts. He also used compassionate speaking abilities often in public speeches, fund-raising activities and private acts of charity.
His next novel, was called Dombey and Son, written between the years 1846- 1848, it was crucial to his development. It was more thoroughly planned, and used maturer thought and deals with more specific social injustice. Shortly after the release of Dombey and Son, he wrote David Copperfield (1849-1850). It has been described as a "holiday" from the larger social concerns. This novel has always been among his most popular novels and was Dickens's own favourite.
Charles Dickens finally found a permanent form for his writing in 1850, with the novel Household Words, and its successor All the Year Round (1859-1888). These novels incorporated a combination of weekly miscellaneous fiction works, poetry, and essays on a wide range of topics. These two works had circulations reaching 300, 000 for some Christmas seasons. During this period Dickens contributed some serials, for example Child's History of England (1851-1853), Hard Times (1854), A Tale of two cities (1859), and Great Expectations (1860- 1861). No English author has devoted 20 years of his/her mature life to such editorial work. Novels During these years he wrote many more novels.
The first of which was called Bleak House (1852-1853), then Hard Times (1854), and Little Dorrit (1855- 1857). These novels were much more dark then his earlier novels. Portraying a sad and dark view on contemporary society. In the novels of the 1850's, he is politically more depressed, emotionally more tragic. The sadness is harsher, and the humour is less gentle, and the happy endings are more relaxed than his early fiction.
Technically the later novels are more logical, the plots are more related to the themes, and the themes express more grim symbols. The characterization has become more in line with general purpose and design. In general the characters are becoming more complex, even the children who were before loosely thrown together are now complicated in their makeup. Dickens becomes more enthraled with the general purpose of life, and poses questions to this in his works, and attempt to explore the prospects of humanity, questions that are still being asked today and being debated by society. During the 1850's his spirits fell. 1855 was "a year of much unsettled discontent for him", .
He began to cease to find satisfaction in his home, and he showed his first sign's of marital discontent. From May 1858, his wife, Catherine Dickens lived apart from him. This separation jarred his friendships and began to shrink his social circle, yet to his surprise, it didn't effect his social popularity. Catherine Dickens stayed silent and most of Dickens family and friends were unwilling to talk about it. He dated the unhappiness of his marriage to 1838, calling his wife "perculliar", and sometimes "under a mental disorder". No one talked about the separation until 1939, when his daughter, Katey speaking to a friend (who was recording the conversation) offered an inside account of the true marriage and family life during that time.
By the end of the 1850's Charles Dickens was tired and growing more and more ill, yet he maintained inventive in his final novels. A Tale of Two Cities (1859) was an experiment, relying less than before on characterization, dialogue, and humour. An exciting narrative, it lacks too many of his strengths to count among his major works. His next, Great Expectations, (1860-1861) resembles David Copperfield , by it being a first person narration, it draws on Dickens personality and experience. He continued to write novels, though none of them was truly up to par with his early novels, they were still given rave reviews.
In 1864-65, he wrote Our Mutual Friend, and Edwin Druid in 1870. His humorous handling is sometimes tiresome, and has grown mechanical. Between the years 1867- 1868 many of his co-writers noticed his immense personality change and it appears in friends remarks who met him again after many years during an international reading tour. ("I must have known two individuals bearing the same name, at various periods of my own life."). But his fiction, besides his personal developments still had the many stylistic features as in his earlier works so he remained the "human hurricane." Even though he was old, and his health was deteriorating, his close friends saw him as a hearty man, with a good deal of fun in him ", but that very day (on a train ride in 1865), Dickens wrote, that "I am nearly used up,".
After he had completed his reading tour, his health remained precarious, but he insisted on continuing to do readings. His farewell reading tour was abandoned when, in April 1869, he collapsed. He began writing another novel in the London Hospital, and gave a short farewell sessions of readings in London, ending with thee famous speech, "From these garish lights I vanish now for evermore..". Charles dickens died suddenly at Gad's Hill on June 9, 1870, and was buried in Westminster Abbey. People all over the world mourned the loss of "a friend" as well as a great entertainer and creative artist, and one of the acknowledged influences upon the spirit of the age.
Charles Dickens is regarded as the greatest English novelist. He had a wider popularity than any other author before him or during his life time. His works appealed to everyone, a peasant, or the Queen of England. This, and the quality of his work enabled his fame to spread world wide. His popularity has never ceased, and he is as popular today, as he ever was. His compassion and intelligence enriched his novels and made him one of the great forces in 19th century literature, an influential conscience of his age.
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