A Christmas Carol - character study of Scrooge
"A Christmas Carol"
“Scrooge! A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching,
covetous old sinner!” Scrooge is the main character in the novel ‘A
Christmas Carol’. At the beginning of the novel he is a brutal, evil,
pitiless, cold-hearted man, but subsequent to meeting three spirits,
Scrooge regrets his life and decides he needs to alter it. The main
theme Charles Dickens conveys through the story is redemption; this is
significant especially in the Victorian era, whilst there was an
immense gap between the prosperous and the inadequate. Dickens uses
Scrooge (a rich, greedy business man) to direct his novel to the very
rich people, and to exhibit how money can impede your good judgement.
Charles’s life influenced his writing, like in ‘A Christmas Carol’;
you can relate his stories to his life. Most of Dickens writing was
regarding poverty because at the time he was deprived. He had to work
in a factory when he was only twelve and when he was fifteen he was
employed in a solicitors office, therefore he empathizes what being a
clerk was like, as one of the characters in ‘A Christmas Carol’.
Dickens chose to call his story ‘A Christmas Carol’ because carols
have some moral background and to teach people a lesson, and that’s
exactly what Dickens wanted to do, he wanted people to learn something
from reading this novel. Another reason why Dickens called his story
‘A Christmas Carol’ is because it was written at Christmas time. The
idea of a song is continued in the structure of the novel because it
is divided into staves rather than chapters, which remind us of a
song. Dickens incorporates Victorian Christmas traditions into his
story, as well as promoting Christian ideas for instance giving to
charity and showing good will towards others.
The protagonist in the story is Ebenezer Scrooge; Dickens describes
Scrooge as a cold, bitter, miserable, selfish, greedy business man,
whose only purpose in life is to make money. H e is portrayed as “Hard
and sharp as a flint, from which no steel had ever struck out generous
fire”; he is “secret and self-contained”. Dickens depicts Scrooge as a
lonely sad person “Solitary as an oyster”, he wants to make Scrooge
out to be a very malicious, malevolent, cruel character, so that it
would make the transformation much more dramatic. Dickens perceives
Scrooge as he saw rich people when he was living in poverty. Scrooge
is very harsh on his clerk, Bob Cratchit; he treats him like a slave.
Scrooge keeps the coal-box in his own room so the clerk is not able to
replenish his fire whenever he wants to. This shows that Scrooge is
very greedy; he would rather let his employee freeze to death than
consume some money to keep warm. When Bob Cratchit asks for Christmas
day off, Scrooge is quite spiteful “You’ll want all day tomorrow I
suppose?” The Clerk observes that it is only once a year, but Scrooge
is merely concerned...