November 26th, 2014

Hard Times/North and South - Reading Day I (It Begins!)

'Compare and contrast the treatment of social issues and ideas in the time of Dickens' novel Hard Times and another Victorian novel of your choice' (mine is North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell).

I have been busy doing other things today, but have settled down this evening rereading Hard Times and note-taking at the same time.  I am consciously reading this with a Marxist theorist head, very apt for Victorians and the Industrial Revolution, nes pa?

I spent 3 hours reading 40 pages and scribbling furiously at the same time.  The stern, but not unkind Gradgrind, the overblown Bounderby, the up-and-coming bully Bitzer and the poor unfortunate Jupe, whose father has left her.  Oh and the social snobbery of the middle classes over the circus people who are on the periphery of the town.  Great stuff - 40 pages down, over 200 to go.  I won't be on here either - will be stashed in a corner somewhere, mentally wandering around Coketown and getting lost down its faceless, grimy avenues.