By Charles Dickens

One of 5 liked Christmas classics
 
First released on December 19, 1843, A Christmas Carol was once an speedy vintage: Londoners thronged to listen to Dickens learn it in individual and acquired out the 1st printing in days. Its reception used to be so ecstatic that it truly is credited with supporting to restore curiosity one of the Victorians in Christmas traditions, together with caroling and vacation playing cards, in addition to inciting an unforeseen wave of charitable giving from Britain’s commercial Age robber barons. Originally conceived as a pamphlet opposed to exploitative capitalism earlier than taking its present shape, it has encouraged dozens of theatrical and film adaptions, and its characters, from Scrooge to Tiny Tim, are endlessly inscribed in our hearts and minds.

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Extra resources for A Christmas Carol (Penguin Christmas Classics)

Sample text

Reimagining Religious Extremes While the first verse paragraph of “Satire 3” identifies religious devotion with the courage to abandon secular pursuits in order to fight traditional Christian enemies, the second paragraph identifies it with the courage to seek true Christianity in a world of warring, state-imposed sects. Those who simply accept one of the national churches provide Donne with satiric examples of how not to seek true religion. Some of the satiric portraits have Juvenalian models, but their careful arrangement recalls Horatian depictions of opposite deviations from the mean rather than Juvenal’s looser mode of progression.

He claims that the Christian’s fear of God is in fact “greatest courage” [summa . . 17). Adapting Lactantius’s point, Donne identifies the fear of damnation with “great courage” (ll. 15–16) and claims that the truly courageous, God-fearing man dares to confront the most terrifying things, the “foes” of God, the infernal triad of the devil, world, and flesh that the poet proceeds to describe (ll. 33–42). In a paradox asserting that “only Cowards dare dye,” Donne argues from the Aristotelian premise that courage is a mean between recklessness and DONNE AND THE PERSONAL MEAN 25 cowardice to a radically non-Aristotelian conclusion.

A further pun reenforces Graccus’s self-serving suppression of crucial distinctions. ” Donne’s elegy “On his Mistris” uses the pun when he begs his beloved not to follow him as a disguised page and not to “change / Thy bodies habit, nor mindes” (ll. 32 The pun on “habits” undercuts Graccus’s love of all churches: while the dressing of a church or woman may not matter, their “divers habits” in the sense of divergent dispositions define them as good 30 CHAPTER ONE or bad. The names Phrygius and Graccus clarify Donne’s attitude toward their positions.

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