Dickens Development In Great Expectations

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Great Expectations written by Charles Dickens titled is a bildungsroman which deals with the character Pip’s development and focuses on his moral growth. The character of Pip is the protagonist in the novel and the reader follows his development when reading the text. This novel delves into the effect of money and class on the individual and therefore traces the development of Pip as the development of strong sense of ethics and morality. Pip’s development is mostly influenced by, his obsession with gentility and the quality of appearing to belong to a high social class. The purpose of this essay is to argue that the character of Pip undergoes development that is, for the most part, influenced by the obsession that he has with gentility and…show more content…
Pip’s narration of his story also reveals his understanding of his own past and its effect upon himself and the most significant people in his life. One significant character in Pip’s life is the character of Joe Gargery. Joe is a simple figure of goodness, who signifies physical and moral strength and Pip describes him to be “mild, good-natured, sweet-tempered, easy-going, foolish, dear fellow-a sort of Hercules in strength, and also in weakness” (Chapter II, 12-13). These qualities that Pip sees in Joe make Pip’s judgement of his disloyalty to him seem cruel and inhumane. Pip’s life with his sister was unpleasant and he is made to feel guilty for being a child. Joe was there to make it different for him. This is evident when Pip states, “[h]ome had never been a very pleasant place [him], because of [Mrs Joe’s] temper [,] [b]ut, Joe sanctified it, and made it beautiful.” His past perspective and attitude was different at this point and he believed that he could still achieve “manhood and independence” (Chapter XIV 87). The role played by Miss Havisham and Estella shape Pip’s attitude, especially how he perceived his home irrespective of how positive of an impact Joe had in his life. Pip realised that even though Joe did play a positive role in his life, Miss Havisham and Estella have exposed him to better life. A life of gentility and…show more content…
The use of Pip’s narration enables him to convey the viewpoint of when he was still young, from child we are first introduced to in the opening of the novel, and of the developed narrator. As a result, Pip in exposing his faults is merciless and allows them to appear through the morality of his narration. Even though Pip’s narration is focused on exposing his faults rather than passing judgement, he does pass judgement on others as an indication that he does notice the good or the bad in other characters. Thus, Pip tells the reader of Herbert in Chapter XXII, that he has never seen anyone else who voices more strongly “in every look and tone, a natural incapacity to do anything secret and mean” (Chapter XXII 140). This form of narration allows Pip to develop through self-reflection. Dickens allows Pip to speak in a different narrative voice. The story telling is intense and Pip’s honesty is shown in his self-condemnation. Similarly, Pip’s adult narration looking back on events allows the reader to witness the
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