Oliver Twist Summary Essay, Research Paper
During the summer of 1999, I have chosen to read the book, Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. Reading this book will better prepare me for my upcoming course of global studies because it deals with many of the regions and time periods we will be studying in class. Although this book was a classic that I thought I had known so much about, reading it and paying attention to the setting and surroundings of the young boy s life, I noticed many historical events and customs from his time period. The following is a report including the answers to the questions provided for my summer reading program.
The story begins with a woman giving birth to a baby without the proper instruments necessary and dies. The boy is brought up in a dirty home with little to eat and under poor conditions. No one knows of the boy s identity. His government caretakers give him the name Oliver. Oliver grows up in a world with no sympathy for poor orphans. He goes to London to escape his mean guardians and to try to make a better life for himself. On his journey he is mixed up with thieves and is caught stealing even though it was the people he was with. He gets sick and is taken care of by the people who he originally stole from and they grow to love him. The thieves find out about him staying with the people and kidnap him. More stealing takes place and Oliver is trained to be a better thief. One time, during a robbery, Oliver is shot and left for dead by the thieves. The people at the house Oliver was to rob took him in and gave him a home. Oliver s identity is found. It turns out that Oliver was supposed to receive an inheritance from his father and one of the people who got him caught knew this. After confessing, Oliver received his inheritance and lived a happy life from then on.
After reading this book and studying the surroundings of the main characters as well as the other characters, I am lead to believe that this book takes place in two different sections of England in the late seventeen hundreds to the early eighteen hundreds. Most of the story takes place in warehouses and in broken down buildings or other hideouts. Other scenes take place in the home of wealthy people in London. One of the main concepts of the story is that although these people are living in an urban society, it is broken up into rich and poor. Those living in shabby abandoned buildings have dreams of someday living in beautiful buildings and homes in the city of London.
In the novel, the main character is Oliver. He is able to see what a day is like for two classes of people. A typical day for a rich man living in London in a nice home with lots of money is much different than a day for a poor beggar. As a poor boy, Oliver was forced to work extremely hard and got very little in return. He would wake from an uncomfortable bed in a cold room with many other people and have scraps of clothing to put on. He would work all day in a factory with few breaks and be rewarded with little food and money. None of his peers or his guardians liked him and therefore treated him without respect. Many times people of this class would have to resort to stealing just to have enough food to survive. It was not an enjoyable living style for the lower class of people. Oliver was also a member of the rich class at various occasions during the story. He would wake to a heated room in a comfortable bed with a servant ready to bring him what he wanted. There would be plenty of food to eat. The boy would then have a tutor come in and educate him. He was able to keep himself clean and was treated with respect and enjoyed his living style.
At the start of this story, A young woman is confronted with a decision; she can either have a son who will be raised under bad conditions because she will not make it through the labor or she can let him die with her. The woman decides to have the boy. As a result, Oliver, the boy, lives a life that is much harder than she could have ever imagined. This decision forced Oliver to live with people who hated him and treated him badly for most of his younger years but in the end his identity was found and his life changed drastically for the better. This was the right thing to do for the woman. It is better to have a hard life than to not have a life at all.
This report is just a preview for what is in store for me this year. This summer is coming to an end and it is time to stop having fun and get serious with my schoolwork. I am glad that I was given this report to complete because it started me with school and now I am ready for this upcoming year.