Charles Dickens: Great Expectations
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens is a coming-of-age novel and it is a classic work of Victorian literature. It depicts the growth and personal development of an orphan named Pip. The novel represents Dickens's peak and maturity as an author. It is set among the marshes of Kent and in London in the early to mid-1800s. From the outset, the reader is "treated" by the terrifying encounter between Pip, the protagonist, and the escaped convict, Abel Magwitch. Great Expectations is a graphic book, full of extreme imagery, poverty, prison ships, "the hulks," barriers and chains, and fights to the death. It combines intrigue and unexpected twists of autobiographical detail in different tones. Regardless of its narrative technique, the novel reflects the events of the time, Dickens's concerns, and the relationship between society and man. Great Expectations has a colourful cast that has entered popular culture: the capricious Miss Havisham, the cold and beautiful Estella, Joe the kind and generous blacksmith, the dry and sycophantic Uncle Pumblechook, Mr Jaggers, Wemmick with his dual personality, and the eloquent and wise friend, Herbert Pocket. Throughout the narrative, typical Dickensian themes emerge: wealth and poverty, love and rejection, and the eventual triumph of good over evil.