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David Copperfield Coureswork How Did Charles Dickens Portray How Children Where Treated In The 19th Century?

1937 words - 8 pages

The character 'David Copperfield' was a boy who grew up without a father and a loving environment. For the first few years of his life he enjoyed his childhood with his helpless mother Clara and his loving maid Peggotty. Along the ages of eight and nine his mother Clara found love in a stern man Mr Murdstone who soon after they got married invited his sister to stay and rule the household. Through out his life David had many unpleasant father figures like Mr Creatle his disfigured headmaster, who apparently was good friends with David's stepfather. Having no father made David confused. "There something strange to me. He had no male role model. David felt compassion for his father.Charles dickens wrote about children and those suffering because he felt that the poor conditions of society were being ignored for instance the exploitation of young children, prostitution, vice and squalor, the epidemics of typhus, cholera and smallpox. Dickens writing showed the parallel from his childhood to David's childhood. Charles had no biological father and neither did David. Charles dickens felt sicken and antipathy. He was so horrified that he wrote a letter to the times saying "I was so indescribably frightful, that I felt for some time afterwards empathy for the people of London."The protagonist's mother had no husband and had to find a father figure for her young she felt he had too many female influences and he needed to live in a protected environment. Clara copperfield was a young woman unable to take care of herself let alone her son. When her husband died six months before she gave birth to David She felt destruct. Clara used to be a servant maid before a wealthy man married her. When David was born she was more of a child than a mother. She seeks help from peggotty her maid in taking care of the child. Clara was very spoiled and didn't have to work anything. She easily got hurt; I know this by "and say such bitter things to me." Clara was more of a playmate, to David than his mother "oh Davy." She was very naive and innocent. She wanted security for David-"I've got you a papa." Clara felt if she brought a man home then David shall be tough and secure. She was disappointingly immature for her age, she was very fragile and male dominant, financially low and repressed. Clara was very weak in the face of mr murdstone her new husband.However on a positive note peggotty the copperfield's maid was very hard hearted towards the antics the Murdstone's were portraying. She was a maternal figure in the home. Through out the upbringing of David she showed loyalty and devotion as the tide. She was cautions and protective and took care of both Clara and David. Peggotty was a surrogate father figure as she filled the gap. She showed understanding, empathy, support, friendship and provided discipline. She had a very strong moral fibre.The character Mr Murdstone was very callous. I know this by-"Clara, my love have you forgotten firmness my dear"-he clearly believed...

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