Introduction on Charles Dickens
He was born in 1812, his family were very poor, his father who was aclerk in the Royal Navy based in Portsmouth, when he was five yearsold his family moved to Chatham which at the time was a big Dockyard.At the age of nine he moved again but this time it was to London,because his family were so poor they could not afford to send Charlesto school so he taught himself.
Charles started work at the age of 11 in a blacking factory helped andtaught what to do by a friend named Bob Fagin (who is in OliverTwist). As a result of being so poor his father went to debtorsprison, because his mother could not afford things she joined himgoing to prison the bailiffs took away all there possessions.
His Grandmother died and left money to the family and as a result ofthis they got out of prison. Charles then went to school as a day boyin Hampstead where he had a ‘cane happy’ headmaster called Mr Jones.Charles then got an office job for newspapers and magazines doing newsreports from parliament and Law courts, soon after he started writingshort stories for magazines, he then died in 1870 at an age of 58.
Oliver Twist was written in 1839 by Charles Dickens and was publishedin monthly issues in magazines and newspapers. The first time OliverTwist was made into a book was in 1850 this was when Charles Dickenswas thirty – eight years old. This book was based on his history andabout the poor who lived in London. Some characters in the book arefrom his history such as Fagin who was his old childhood friend or Mr.Bumble who was Dickens Headmaster.
Oliver Twist is an orphan who was born in a workhouse. After anunhappy apprenticeship, Oliver runs away to London where he falls inwith thieves, headed by Fagin a villainous ‘Jew ‘. Mr Brownlow rescueshim but the gang kidnaps him back. Oliver discovers the identity ofhis parents. The gang that Fagin runs are exposed.
This would be similar to the workhouse Oliver would have spent 10years of his life in.
We learn a lot about the way people lived then from the way Dickensdescribed it. In chapter eight Oliver runs away from the workhouse andfrom Mr Sowerberry and heads off to London.
As Oliver walked away from the workhouse he was hiding behind thehedges because the fear of him being ‘pursued had overtaken’. He saw a