Hard Times-Charles Dickens
In “Hard Times” there is a teacher called Mr Gradgrind, Mr Gradgrind set up a schoolAs a charity. Although this makes him sound like a kind man he is quite the opposite. He is very harsh and cruel man. I know this because of how he treats one of the members of his school. Her name is Sissy Jupe. One day Mr Gradgrind said “girl number 20, who is that girl. Sissy stood up and said “me sir”. Mr Gradgrind asked her name, when she replied he said “sissy is not a name and your father should not call you it!” then Mr Gradgrind asked her fathers job and Sissy told him that he looked after the horses in the circus. Mr Gradgrind said, “right then, define a horse!”
Sissy could not do this. Then he asked one of the boys to do this and straight away all of the boys put their hands up in the air. Mr Gradgrind chose one called Bitzer, he defines a horse very well with great detail. Bitzer only knew this because he had committed it to memory by chanting it, he didn’t know what it all meant.
I think this was unfair because Mr Gradgrind was favouring the boys over the girls and he was being practically unfair to Sissy. Mr Gradgrind has no feeling of love for anyone, he doesn’t even know the meaning of love of feeling because it is not a “fact”.
After this Mr Gradgrind was on his way home walking through the streets and he came across the circus, of course he did not believe in the circus because it was entertainment. He looked around and saw his son Tom and his daughter Louisa watching the circus performers. Straight away he went over to them and told them to get home immediately. Mr Gradgrind walked them home and in to the living room. In the room already were Mr Bounderby and Mrs Gradgrind. Mr Bounderby is a man who has a lot of self-confidence and is always boasting about how he used to be poor and live in the gutters and now he is rich and lives in a rich house. Mrs Gradgrind was ill and just like Mr Gradgrind. She stayed at home all day and lay down. Mr Gradgrind told Mr Bounderby and Mrs Gradgrind what tom and Louisa have been doing. They were both ashamed of them and asked them why they were there, they replied that they liked the entertainment. Mr Gradgrind told them to go to the study. Tom went to the study and as Louisa was walking down the stairs Mr Bounderby approached her. He said that he will sort it out with Mr Gradg…
…e talking and Louisa was very angry with him because he hadn’t thought her the meaning of love.
This changed him and made him realise that there is another side of life, this was love.
Bitzer came running into the house saying that they have been robbed! All of the money has been taken out of the safe. Immediately for some reason they all assume that it was Stephen Blackpool. Mr Bounderby told the police and they sent out a search for him.
Mr Gradgrind went over to Tom and said “it was you, it was you that took the money wasn’t it.”
Now Mr Gradgrind knows that it was Tom he took him to the circus to hide him. Mr Sleary dressed Tom up in a clown costume. He did this to give him a disguise in case of anyone finding out that it was him.
Bitzer came in to the tent and said “come with me Tom, I know that you did it all along.”
Bitzer led Tom out of the tent walking him towards Coketown.
I have learned al lot from this book, things like the meaning of love. I found it a challenging book because a lot of the words were meant to have two meanings. I have seen the two ways of life, rich and poor. I have also seen the different ways that people understand things.