Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
(Ignatius Critical Editions)

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Synopsis

Pope John Paul II described Dickens’ books as "filled with love for the poor and a sense of social regeneration . . . warm with imagination and humanity". Such true charity permeates Dickens’ novels and ultimately drives the characters either to choose regeneration or risk disintegration. In Great Expectations, Pip—symbolic of the pilgrim convert—gains both improved fortunes and a growth in wisdom, but as he acquires the latter, he must relinquish the former—ending with a wealth of profound goodness, not of worldly goods.

That the Dickensian message was a Christian one is unmistakable. Reminiscent of an Augustinian model, one of reflection, conversion, and moral improvement, Pip undergoes an internal change that manifests itself in his profound contrition for his earlier deeds and his equally profound resolution to make amends. As we travel with Pip, we find that Dickens leads us to an acceptance of worldly limitations and an anticipation of final salvation.

The exciting new edition of Dickens’s classic novel includes critical essays by some of today’s leading Dickens scholars.

 

About Charles Dickens

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Charles Dickens, perhaps the best British novelist of the Victorian era, was born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England in 1812. His happy early childhood was interrupted when his father was sent to debtors' prison, and young Dickens had to go to work in a factory at age twelve. Later, he took jobs as an office boy and journalist before publishing essays and stories in the 1830s. His first novel, The Pickwick Papers, made him a famous and popular author at the age of twenty-five. Subsequent works were published serially in periodicals and cemented his reputation as a master of colorful characterization, and as a harsh critic of social evils and corrupt institutions. His many books include Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, Bleak House, Great Expectations, A Christmas Carol, and A Tale of Two Cities. Dickens married Catherine Hogarth in 1836, and the couple had nine children before separating in 1858 when he began a long affair with Ellen Ternan, a young actress. Despite the scandal, Dickens remained a public figure, appearing often to read his fiction. He died in 1870, leaving his final novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, unfinished.
 
Published August 10, 2010 by Ignatius Press. 715 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Great Expectations

Slate

It may also provide the opportunity for him to indulge his love for the German language, as the story “stretches from contemporary American to South American to East Germany before the collapse of the Berlin Wall.”.

Nov 17 2014 | Read Full Review of Great Expectations (Ignatius ...

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