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A Christmas Carol
Transcript of A Christmas Carol
Influences and Inspiration CHARLES DICKENS:
LIFE AND WORK DICKENS' LONDON:
Victorian England 1832-1870 THE LEGACY OF
A CHRISTMAS CAROL Charles Dickens was born February 7, 1812 and died June 9th, 1870
When he was 12, his father was sent to a debtors' prison and he went to work in a boot-blacking factory
He considered it to be the low point of his life and later wrote that he wondered "how I could have been so easily cast away at such a young age" Some of his other famous works are as follows:
A Tale of Two Cities
Great Expectations During the Victorian Period, England underwent the Industrial Revolution, also known as the Machine Age
This era marked a shift from an economy based on land ownership to an economy based on trade and manufacturing
In 1800 the population of London was around one million people. That number would swell to 4.5 million by 1880! Several outbreaks of cholera in the mid 19th century, along with The Great Stink of 1858, when the stench of the Thames caused Parliament to recess, brought a cry for action
The Victorian answer to dealing with the poor was the New Poor Law
These workhouses seemed like a prison for the poor With the turn of the century and Queen Victoria's death in 1901, the Victorian period came to a close
In 1840, only 20% of children in London had any type of schooling!
Because child labor laws had not been enforced yet, poor children began working as young as 3-5 years old in coal and iron mines, in factories, and as chimney sweeps Some effects of child labor on the children of the Industrial Revolution:
stunting of growth
early death DICKENS AND CHRISTMAS The medieval Christmas traditions, which combined the celebration of the birth of Christ with the ancient Roman festival of Saturnalia (a pagan celebration for the Roman god of agriculture), and the Germanic winter festival of Yule, had come under intense scrutiny by the Puritans. Prince Albert (husband of Queen Victoria) brought the German custom of decorating the Christmas tree to England in the early 1800s
The singing of Christmas carols began to thrive again
The first Christmas card appeared in the 1840's Dickens' description of the holiday:
"a good time: a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time: the only time I know of in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of other people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys" Dickens began writing his "Little Carol" in October, 1843
Feuding with publishers, he financed the publishing of the book himself, ordering lavish binding, gold edges, and hand-colored illustrations
He set the price at 5 shillings so that everyone could afford it While it is obviously a beloved Christmas story, its theme is a universal one that crosses
cultural boundaries and faith traditions REMEMBER!
It is important to consider WHY
this story is still so popular and relevant today!