Great Expectations Essays

Great Expectations

It is difficult to classify the personality of any one person as being entirely one way or another. So, too, it is difficult to classify a rich, round character like Pip in Charles Dickens' Great Expectations as being essentially passionate or...

Great Expectations

The forms that stand in closest competition with those undergoing modification and improvement will naturally suffer most.

--Darwin, The Origin of the Species (1859)

Christopher Ricks poses the question, in his essay on Dickens' Great Expectations,...

Great Expectations

"We have no choice, you and I, but to obey our instructions. We are not free to follow our own devices, you and I." (265).

The question of self-determination is central in Great Expectations. Dickens struggles to determine and express to what...

Great Expectations

The fledgling years of post-industrial Britain were tumultuous ones, as are the beginnings of all eras that dismantle century-old beliefs and traditions. It was the advent of capitalism, signifying endless opportunities for wealth through industry...

Great Expectations

In the first part of Dicken's Great Expectations, Pip confesses to his readers that "I had known, from the time when I could speak, that my sister, in her capricious and violent coercion, was unjust to me" (63). During Pip's first visit to Satis...

Great Expectations

In literature, an author will often choose to portray a turning point in a novel through a change in setting. This transformation alerts the reader to take notice of not simply the plot development but also many other things about the work. For...

Great Expectations

Great Expectations is a novel which, in its first part, focuses largely on the education and upbringing of a young boy, Pip. Orphaned at a young age, he is raised "by hand" by his older sister and her husband, a blacksmith. Written from the adult...

Great Expectations

In Dickens’s Great Expectations, the alienation of the amiable Joe Gargery speaks volumes about the values of high society at that time. Joe represents the epitome of friendship and love, but he is constantly out of his element when around...

Great Expectations

Great Expectations is the account of a young boy’s transition into adulthood as Pip, the central character, searches for contentment. Born into no particular wealth or distinction, he may have lived wholly satisfied with his modest pedigree had it...

Great Expectations

“Tell me your dreams for a while and I will tell you what you are really like.” Written by E.R. Pfaff in 1868, this proverb posits dreams as authentic manifestations of an individual’s identity and character. It makes two conclusions: 1) dreams...

Great Expectations

Biddy is introduced early in Great Expectations and is mentioned regularly throughout, though she is not one of the major characters. She does, however, serve as a constant reminder to Pip of what he is leaving behind and, as she is more of a peer...

12th Grade

Great Expectations

In the 1861 novel Great Expectations, Charles Dickens tells the story of a poor English boy named Pip who faces a number of complicated situations and characters on his way to becoming a gentleman. Dickens’ writing style, while indicative of the...

College

Great Expectations

As simplistic and politically impartial as Victorian novels and their common familial themes of love and companionship may seem, there is customarily a greater sociopolitical concern inserted within the narrative for the reader of the time to have...

College

Great Expectations

In Great Expectations, the word “taint” describes Pip's soiled conscience and shame for his identity, which he confuses with low class status and physical filth (Dickens 249). Pip's usage of it in the passage about his feeling of 'taint' shows the...

12th Grade

Great Expectations

‘Eating and drinking are valued by Dickens as proofs of sociability and ceremonies of love.’ Discuss the significance of food and meals in the novel Great Expectations.

Throughout the novel Great Expectations, numerous meals which have symbolic...