Why do you think the author wrote this book?
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Oliver Twist, Dickens’s second novel and his first real social novel, critiqued the harm public institutions inflicted on the poor. Dickens would come to be known as the master of this form, and would continue it in Nicholas Nickleby, which he would write while still working on Oliver Twist. The novel tells the story of Oliver, a young orphan raised in a workhouse seventy miles outside of London, who runs away and finds himself taken in by thieves. It was written partially in reaction to the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834, which, among other things, essentially took the rights of citizenship away from paupers, who were interred in workhouses and forfeited their political rights in order to receive aid.