How Dickens Conveys Moral Lessons in a Christmas Carol

1889 words 8 pages
What are the moral lessons Dickens wished to convey in A Christmas Carol and how effectively does he convey them?

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is a classic Christmas story which contains stern moral lessons, written in 1843. These lessons are designed to make the readers of that time, the Victorians, conscience of the injustices that were present in the rapidly expanding cities of Britain, due to the Industrial Revolution. The story includes three morals, demonstrated by the three Ghosts of Past, Present and Future, which attempt to convert the protagonist, Ebenezer Scrooge, from his greedy ways. The morals of this novella, as a result, which was originally written to communicate with the Victorians, is just as relevant today,
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This message appears to be disguised in his jolly character where Dickens creates a physical description of the ghost when he says: “its genial face, sparkling eyes, its open hand its cheery manner, its unconstrained demeanour, and its joyous air.’ This suggests that he is the personified Christmas, with all the characteristics and expressions to contribute to the Christmas theme of this story, although the message of the story remains. Despite his jolly appearance, Dickens still uses the Ghost of Christmas Present to deliver a stern message in Stave 3, where the ghost mimics Scrooge’s own words when he says: ‘If he be like to die, he had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.’ This technique made Scrooge realise that he has been too harsh with other people, and the use of Scrooge’s own words by the spirit displays his wrongdoing vigorously and has made Scrooge feel ashamed of himself.

Dickens expresses his morals to the readers through an uncertain figure in the form of the Ghost of Christmas Future. Dickens characterises the Death-like character in the beginning of Stave 4 when he says: ‘It was shrouded in a deep black garment... it would have been difficult to detach its figure from the night, and separate it from the darkness by which it was surrounded’. The use of words such as “shrouded” and “darkness” conveys the sinister aspect of this ghost and


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