A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities
Set in London and Paris at the time of the French Revolution, Charles Darnay renounces his family name Evremonde and moves to England. He marries Lucie Manette whose father, Doctor Manette, has been falsely imprisoned by Charles’ uncle. When Charles returns to France to help an old servant, he is imprisoned and sentenced to death. Can Dr. Manette save him…?
Charles Dickens, (1812-70), was born in Portsmouth, where his father worked in the Navy pay office. When his father was imprisoned for debt in the Marshalsea prison, the twelve-year-old Dickens was forced to take a job in a factory, a humiliating experience that he would never forget. Many of his novels deal with the theme of poor or abandoned children.

After working as a shorthand reporter in the House of Commons, he began to write newspaper articles. This led to an offer from a publisher to write sketches for a monthly publication. The new series, which was published as The Pickwick Papers, established Dickens as a hugely popular writer.

Dickens was the most popular Victorian novelist and he became a public figure of considerable importance, despite his attacks on social problems. Dickens’ early novel, The Pickwick Papers, which continued the 18th-century comic picaresque tradition, was followed by Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby, which were more serious novels. They attack both the treatment of the poor in Victorian England and the education system. Dickens continued his attacks on social institutions in Bleak House and Little Dorrit, where he criticized the legal system.

The focus of his comments in A Christmas Carol and Hard Times was slightly different. He was writing at the height of the Industrial Revolution, a period which saw, on the one hand, a great rise in living standard for many people, but on the other, great poverty and suffering in the new industrial cities. Dickens questioned whether the economic theories of the period could produce justice for the whole society.

Dickens is most remembered for the vast collection of characters he created in his novels, rather than for his ideas about social policy. His focus was always on the individual, rather than on abstract theories. He was, above all, a great stylist, and it was the quality of his writing that makes him popular with readers even today.

Dickens’ most important novels include:
The Pickwick Papers, 1837; Oliver Twist, 1839; Nicholas Nickleby, 1839; A Christmas Carol, 1843; Dombey and Son, 1848; David Copperfield, 1850; Bleak House, 1853; Hard Times, 1854; Little Dorrit, 1857; A Tale of Two Cities, 1859; Great Expectations, 1861.
Charles Dickens

Chapter One - Recalled to Life

Chapter Two - Paris

Chapter Three - The Old Barley

Chapter Four - Death and Revenge

Chapter Five - A Marriage and a Confession

Chapter Six - The Revolution in France

Chapter Seven - A Prisoner of the Revolution

Chapter Eight - Joy and Despair

Chapter Nine - Sydney Carton Plays Cards

Chapter Ten - Secrets from The Past

Chapter Eleven - Sydney Carton Plays his Last Card

Chapter Twelve - A Flash and a Crash

How Dickens interpreted the French Revolution

Chapter Thirteen - The Guillotine

關鍵字詞: A Tale of Two Cities|Charles Dickens| Charles Darnay|Evremonde|Reader | Black Cat English Readers|Classics




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