Dickens and Thackeray: Punishment and Forgiveness
Attitudes toward punishment and forgiveness in English society of the nineteenth century came, for the most part, out of Christianity. In actual experience the ideal was not often met, but in the literature of the time the model was important. For novelists attempting to tell exciting and dramatic stories, violent and criminal activities played an important role, and, according to convention, had to be corrected through poetic justice or human punishment. Both Dickens' and Thackeray's novels subscribed to the ideal, but dealt with the dilemma it presented in slightly different ways.
At a time when a great deal of attention has been directed toward economic production and consumption as the bases for value, Reed's well-documented study reviving moral belief as a legitimate concern for the analysis of nineteenth-century English texts is particularly illuminating.
Results 1-3 of 47
Critics have long been aware of Bounderby ' s and Mrs . Sparsit ' s roles as
creative artists . ... Allen Samuels has again called attention to this subject ( Hard
Times : An Introduction to the Variety of Criticism ( London : Macmillan , 1992 ) ,
Even in his early writings Thackeray could invoke his own moral purpose and
wish to hold himself and other writers to a worthy code of conduct — witness the
extended criticism of his fellow artists that Catherine represents . He welcomed ...
The critic is himself a judge , revealing the narrator ' s crime of theft . The narrator '
s stories are not his own . This means that the narrator has not , in fact , arranged
the punishments of the various animals . Their fates were predetermined and ...
What people are saying - Write a review
Attitudes Toward Punishment and Forgiveness
25 other sections not shown