Generally considered as one of the greatest novelists of England till the date, Charles Dickens was actively producing novels during the period of 1820-50. His novels mostly have pathos and emotions, the reality in its rawest form and an urge to break free of the conventional mindset. Born in 1812 to a lower class family, Charles Dickens, whose full name was Charles John Huffam Dickens, could not even attend proper schooling because he had no money to fund his studies and even his father’s fortune betrayed him. Forced to work in a factory at a tender age, Dickens saw the reality of life from very close and he might have used the same experiences in his novels later in his life.
Dickens career is assumed to begin significantly after the publication of his novel The Pickwick Papers in a serialised form. After that, he did not look back and produced many novels, as many as 15 full-length novels and uncountable short stories and non-fiction works (shorter form). Some of the most famous works by Charles Dickens are:
A Tale of Two Cities
The Old Curiosity Shop
A Tale of Two Cities
Most of the scholars of the English literature have widely praised the artistry of Dickens as a novelist and some of them not only consider him the greatest novelist of the Victorian era but also the greatest novelist of all time in English literary history. These claims have a wide foundation of ideas as well. No novelist has ever been so popular and widely accepted as Charles Dickens was, is and would certainly continue to be.
Though critics also claim that Dickens’ novels did not raise their eyebrows on any other thing than the industrialisation. Critics like Terry Eagleton don’t even consider Dickens a worthy person to be called a full-fledged novelist and call him a mere pamphleteer.
Novels of Dickens do criticise and protest against the growing industrialisation of that time. However, it (his fiction) was never bereaved of the art of novel writing. His plots and his characters were widely respected and loved by the readers – most of the characters by Dickens have become the prototypes of their ‘respective society’.
Whatever be the case among the critics, Charles Dickens enjoys, still, a great popularity among the readers of academic fiction and his novels are widely taught in the colleges and schools. Fiction lovers, when turning to classics after being dejected by the modern repetitions in fiction, do give an eye to Dickens works and that surely gives them the solace they seek.
Read the review of Hard Times below:
Read an article on Literature News about Charles Dickens’ greatness and confusion around it: