TALE OF TWO CITIES
Charles Dickenson
MEET CHARLES DICKENS
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Born in Portsmouth, England
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Lower middle class family
Moved several times as a young person due to financial troubles with his father finding a
job.
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Dickens father was eventually imprisoned for debt in London’s prison.
Dickens was sent to work in a shoe polish factory to bring in income because of this.
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This event “scarred” Dickens and is often referred to in his writing.
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He held a sympathy for the poor because of these events.
DICKENS THE WRITER
Serial publication of Pickwick Papers began in 1836.
Dickens became in overnight success.
Dickens was the most popular author of his time.
His works:
Oliver Twist
Tale of Two Cities
Hard Times
David Copperfield
Great Expectations
Barnaby Rudge
A Christmas Carol
DICKENS ADULT YEARS…
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- He was married with 10 children.
- Worked on causes to improve education, and acted in plays.
- Traveled widely and did reading tours.
In 1869 during one of these tours his health failed and he returned home.
- He died while working on The Mystery of Edwin Drood
- He is buried in the poets corner of West Minster Abbey.
TALE OF TWO CITIES
A Tale of Two Cities was published in 1859.
Dickens was most popular author of his time.
Was dismayed at social inequality in British society.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”
While it was the best of times for England’s wealthy, with their town homes
and country estates, Dickens believed that times had never been worse for the
nations poor.
During the novel he had met and fallen in love with Ellen Ternan who they
believe is the model for the character Lucie Manette.
TAL E OF TWO CITIES
Novel was published serially in weekly or monthly installments in popular
magazines.
The installment usually included one or two chapters and an illustration of an
important or dramatic scene.
Novel published in book form after serial was finished.
A Tale of Two Cities was the first serial to be published in his own new
magazine.
The serial form required a “cliffhanger” at the end of each chapter.
Why?
A TAL E OF TWO CITIES
The novel tells of people whose lives are interrupted or wasted, then
reawakened with new purpose.
Several of the characters are symbolic representations of ideas rather than
real-life individuals.
It’s rich in detailed descriptions.
Tale of Two Cities has been filmed many times.
Dickens hoped to create the historical events of the French Revolution
understandable.
TIME & PLACE
The action of A Tale of Two Cities takes place over a period of 18 years.
It is told in a flashback.
The key events take place just before and during the French Revolution.
Novel is set mostly in London and Paris
FRENCH REVOLUTION
One of the most important events of 1700’s
The revolution began in 1789 with an attack on the notorious prison, the
Bastille. (key event in story).
Several people were elected throughout the revolution in France, but many
resorted to terrorism to defeat their political opponents.
Kings were worried that thrones were in jeopardy.
Some political leaders threatened to over throw the current government.
Many of the events in Tale of Two Cities are real life events.
The book is meant to depict the cruelty and poverty the French poor had to
endure at the hands of the corrupt nobility.
4 REASONS THE REVOLUTION
OCCURRED
3.
1. France could not produced enough food to feed its people.
2. The newly wealthy middle-class was without political power
Peasants hated the ancient feudal system in which they were forced to
work for local nobles.
4. New ideas about social and political reform were spreading
FRENCH REVOLUTION VIDEO
French Revolution Documentary
JOURNAL
TAL E OF TWO CITIES #1
Describe a time in life in which is was the best of times and also the worst of
times like Dickens describes in the opening of the novel.
INTRODUCTION OF
TALE OF TWO CITIES
Oprah Introduction of Tale of Two Cities
ALLUSION
An implied or indirect reference in literature to a familiar
person, place or event.
Examples:
• “Beam me up Scotty”!
• “May the force be with you”!
• “Boom goes the dynamite”!
WHY USE ALLUSIONS?
If the audience is familiar with the event or person, they will
also know background and context. Thus, just a few words
are enough to create a certain picture (or scene) in the
readers’ minds.
The advantages are as follows:
- We don’t need lengthy explanations to clarify the
problem.- The reader becomes active by reflecting on the
analogy.
- The message will stick in the reader's mind.
ALLUSION EXAMPLES
Examples:
The Scrooge Syndrome (allusion on the rich, grieve and
mean Ebeneezer Scrooge from Charles
Dicken’s “Christmas Carol”)
The software included a Trojan Horse. (allusion on the
Trojan horse from Greek mythology)
ALLUSION EXAMPLE
"Christy didn't like to spend money. She was no Scrooge, but she seldom
purchased anything except the bare necessities".
Did you spot the allusion to Scrooge? That name should bring to
mind an image of someone who 'pinches pennies' and hoards
money with a passion. But the allusion only works if the reader is
familiar with Charles Dickens' story 'A Christmas Carol'.
ALLUSION VIDEO & ACTIVITY
Allusion Video
Allusion Comic Exercise
DIALOGUE
In its widest sense, dialogue is simply conversation between
characters or speakers in a literary work; in its most restricted
sense, it refers specifically to the speech of characters in a drama.
“ ‘Quotations are often used in writing to off set that a character
is speaking out loud” said Mrs. Fuggiti. ‘ “
A quote from a novel would be in quotations as well, but a quote
does not have to be dialogue. It can be ANYTHING!
We will be working on quote analysis throughout unit, please keep
this in mind.
DIALECT
A regional or social variety of a languages distinguished by
pronunciation, grammar, or vocabulary, especially a way of
speaking that differs from the standard variety of the language.
An accent is the way that particular person or group of
people sound. It’s the way somebody pronounces words, the
musicality of their speech, etc.
A dialect describes both a person’s accent and the grammatical
features of the way that person talks.
DIALECT EXAMPLES
Examples:
Ya’ll
Hero vs. Sub vs. Hoagie
Soda vs. Pop
Needs done
I’ll grab the cereal awhile
Yous guys
Real quick
Take a shower
DICTION
Diction can be defined as style of speaking or writing determined by the choice of
word by a speaker or a writer.
Individuals vary their diction depending on different contexts and settings.
It may be “formal” where formal words are used in formal situations:
- press conferences
-presentations
- school
We use “informal” diction in informal situation:
- letters to a friend
- texting
- e-mail
“Slang” is the use of words that are impolite and newly coined.
JOURNAL # 2
Examine the way that Jerry Cruncher speaks
versus some of the other characters in the story.
How is this an example of dialect? What does it
say about the character Jerry Cruncher?
FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE
Language that cannot be taken literally since it was written to create a special
effect or feeling.
It often will imply a meaning or provoke emotion
There are 7 categories of figurative language.
Imagery
Simile
Metaphor
Alliteration
Personification
Onomatopoeia
Hyperbole
IMAGERY
Language that appeals to the senses.
Most images are visual, but they can also appeal to the
senses of sound, touch, taste, or smell.
Then with cracked hands that ached
from labor in the weekday weather . . .
from “Those Winter Sundays”
SIMILE
A comparison of two things using “like, as than,” or
“resembles.”
“She is as beautiful as a sunrise.”
METAPHOR
A direct comparison of two unlike things
“All the world’s a stage, and we are merely players.”
- William Shakespeare
EXTENDED METAPHOR
A metaphor that goes several lines or possible the entire
length of a work.
IMPLIED METAPHOR
The comparison is hinted at but not clearly stated.
“The poison sacs of the town began to manufacture venom,
and the town swelled and puffed with the pressure of it.”
- from The Pearl
- by John Steinbeck
ALLITERATION
Consonant sounds repeated at the beginnings of words
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, how many
pickled peppers did Peter Piper pick?
PERSONIFICATION
A figure of speech in which an animal, object, or idea is given human form or
characteristics.
Dickens was a master of this technique and often used it to help create striking
descriptions or moods in his novels.
Chapter 5: The concept of hunger is described as “staring down
from the chimneys of the poor and rattling its dry bones”.
Chapter 9: He uses personification to describe a Nobel's castle. By
making the castle itself seem to comment on the action, Dickens
does not have to express directly his own feelings about the noble.
ONOMATOPOEIA
Words that imitate the sound they are naming
BUZZ
BOOM
BANG
ZAP
SNAP, CRACKLE, POP
THRONG
OR sounds that imitate another sound
HYPERBOLE
A hyperbole is an extreme exaggeration used to make a
point. It is like the opposite of “understatement.” It is
from a Greek word meaning “excess.”
-I am so hungry I could eat a horse.
-I have a million things to do.
-I had to walk 15 miles to school in the snow, uphill.
-I had a ton of homework.
-If I can’t buy that new game, I will die.
HYPERBOLE IN LITERATURE
A great example of hyperbole in literature comes from Paul Bunyan’s opening
remarks in the American folktale Babe, the Blue Ox:
“Well now, one winter it was so cold that all the geese flew backward and all
the fish moved south and even the snow turned blue. Late at night, it got so
frigid that all spoken words froze solid afore they could be heard. People had
to wait until sunup to find out what folks were talking about the night before.”
HYPERBOLE IN LITERATURE
"As I Walked Out One Evening" by W.H. Auden:
"I'll love you, dear,
I'll love you till China and Africa meet,
And the river jumps over the mountain
And the salmon sing in the street,
I'll love you till the ocean
Is folded and hung up to dry
And the seven stars go squawking
Like geese about the sky."
JOURNAL # 3
Find an example of figurative language in “The
Tale Of Two Cities”. Be sure to explain what
type of device is being used. Why might Dickens
have used figurative language in this instance?
FILMS AND CARTOONS
DEFINITION OF SATIRE….
A literary work that ridicules its subject through
the use of techniques such as exaggeration, reversal,
incongruity, and/or parody in order to make a comment
or criticism about it.
Matrix Clip
EXAGGERATION
-To enlarge, increase, or represent something beyond
normal bounds so that it becomes ridiculous and its faults
can be seen
-Example: Princess Fiona fights and successfully defeats
Robin Hood and all of his Merry Men without any help
and without any weapons.
-The pauses during the fight are exaggerated
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REVERSAL
To present the opposite of the normal order
(e.g., the order of events, hierarchical order).
Shrek Matrix Clip
Example: The roles of the hero and the damsel in
distress have been reversed. In this clip, it is Princess
Fiona, the rescuee, who fights and defeats the foe.
INCONGRUITY
To present things that are out of place or are
absurd in relation to its surroundings.
Example:
Princess Fiona uses her ponytail to deliver a
knockout punch to one of the Merry Men. While
frozen in a mid-air martial arts kick, Princess Fiona
pauses to fix her disheveled hair before knocking
out two of the Merry Men.
PARODY
To imitate the techniques and/or style of
some person, place, or thing.
Matrix Parodies
CRITICISM ABOUT SOCIETY?
The traditional story of the knight rescuing the damsel-indistress is not a realistic depiction of the roles filled by men and
women in modern society.
Example: Current Hollywood action movies like The Matrix
have become ridiculous because they are too focused on special
effects.
UNIVERSAL CHARACTER
A character that symbolically embodies well-known meanings and basic human experiences, regardless
of when or where he/she lives.
1) Hero (think of the classic hero journey & qualities of hero)
“The main character leaves his or her community to go on an adventure, performing deeds
that bring honor to the community” (Herz and Gallo 121).
2) Mother figure
Fairy Godmother (surrogate mother)—comforts and directs child, especially when he
or she is confused and needs guidance. Represents powers that can be called on
for help
when it is needed. Helps young person to solve own problems (Knapp 71
Earth Mother Stepmother-
3) The great teacher/mentor
Wise old men/women—protects or helps main character when he or she faces
challenges.
UNIVERSAL CHARACTER
4) The innocent:
Child/Youth
Inexperienced adult
5) Underdog:
6) Double:
Split personality—the other side of an individual
UNIVERSAL SIGNIFICANCE
The generally accepted importance or value of work to
represent human experience regardless of culture or
time period.
These books often comment on:
1) Politics
2) Society
3) Religion
4) Universal Characters that socially impact the world
UNIVERSAL SIGNIFICANCE
POLITICS
These books represent some of the most important works that examine
politics, economics, and philosophy that affect government.
1) The Rights of Men by Thomas Paine: Paine’s book states that the
government’s role is to protect the rights of its citizens, and when the
government cannot do so, it should be overthrown. This book was
written to defend the French Revolution and was an inspiration for
democracy around the world.
2) Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriot Beacher Stowe: Written by a
middle aged, white woman in 1851, Uncle Tom’s Cabin has been
credited for changing the views of slavery in the north and continues
to serve as a reminder of the effects of slavery and other inhumane
acts.
UNIVERSAL SIGNIFICANCE
SOCIETY
1) Diary of A Young Girl by Anne Frank: This landmark book details
the days of a Jewish family in hiding during the Nazi takeover in the
Netherlands. The innocence of this young girl so full of hopes and
dreams is in sharp contrast to the reality of her ending at the hands of
the Nazis. This book has become a symbol and reminder against racial
persecution.
2) Walden by Henry David Thoreau: Thoreau underwent an experiment
of living isolated on Walden Pond in order to better understand society.
He wrote the results of this experience in Walden, which has
subsequently become a source of inspiration for those seeking a simpler,
more self-sufficient life.
UNIVERSAL SIGNIFICANCE
RELIGION
1) The Bible: This sacred text brought Christianity to the world
and has continued to serve as a source of inspiration for
millions of people. It is the most translated and the most
frequently purchased book in the world.
2) Other Religious Texts:
UNIVERSAL SIGNIFICANCE
SOCIALLY
Characters and stories that have become ingrained in cultures around the world to
upsetting censorship to inspiring the imagination of many, these works of literature
have all touched the world in significant ways.
1)
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens: From the time this book was first
published in December of 1843, it has enjoyed enormous popularity. During the
time that Dickens’ wrote the story, Christmas traditions were going out of style.
He is often credited with saving the old traditions of Christmas.
2) A Brave New World: Often considered one of the great novels of the 20th
century. Huxley’s novel looked unfavorably on the loss of an individual’s identity
through technological advancements. Some of the developments Huxley wrote
about have become startlingly accurate as the future he predicted in 1931 has come
closer to reality.
JOURNAL 4
What kind of universal characters or
universal significance are within the novel
Tale of Two Cites? Explain how this is
evident.
SYMBOLISM
When a person, place,
thing, or event that has
meaning in itself also
represents, or stands for,
something else.
=
=
=
Innocence
America
Peace
A symbol is anything that hints at something else,
usually something abstract, such as an idea or
belief. A literary symbol is an object, a person, a
situation, or an action that has a literal meaning in
a story but suggests or represents other meanings.
Define:
Ex:
A general symbol is universal in its meaning. Even if
the symbol were removed from a work of literature, it
would still suggest a larger meaning.
Ex: While the sea symbolizes the universal voyage from
life to death in The Odyssey, it retains this association
independent from literature. The "sea" is a general
symbol.
Ex: In poetry, a "rose" often is not only a flower, but also
a general symbol for romantic love.
A specific symbol is not universal in its
meaning. It acquires a specific meaning based
on how it relates to the content of a novel,
poem, etc. The symbol's significance exists
only within the context created by the author.
Ex: A hunting cap in The Catcher in the Rye
has no universal meaning, but within the
novel it is worn backwards and symbolizes a
looking back at childhood.
Ex: A pair of eyes on a billboard in the Great
Gatsby has no universal meaning, but within
the story symbolizes the eyes of God
watching humanity.
To be called a symbol, an item must suggest a meaning
different in kind from its literal meaning; a symbol is
something more than its class or type.
 A symbol may have more than one meaning. This does
not mean that the symbol can mean anything you want it
to because possible meanings are always controlled by
the context.
To identify a symbol, note if an object seems to:
1) Appear repeatedly have an unusually vivid
quality
2) Described with language conveying much
emphasis
3) Have more significance than its literal reality
would suggest
4) Consistent!
Carefully examine how the symbol
functions in relation to the story. Ask
yourself what idea is represented by the
symbol.
Classification may reveal opposite relationships,
such as symbols of good and evil, life and
death. Or symbols may fall into isolated
categories, such as destruction or innocence.
Determine how much depth a particular symbol has
and classify its possible meanings. While you may
focus on only one major symbol, you may be able to
divide it into two specific meanings and two general
meanings.
Remember: A symbol has a literal meaning in a
story but suggests or represents other meanings.
Not all symbolism is obvious; often it is subtle and
indirect.
American Beauty Clip
In the clip American Beauty what kind of descriptions
are used to describe the plastic bag?
What does the plastic bag mean to the male character?
Based on the description of the plastic bag and what
the plastic bag appears to mean to the male
character, what would you predict that the bag
symbolizes throughout the film?
MOTIF
A motif can be an element or idea that repeats throughout that piece of
literature. A motif could be expressed by a collection of related symbols.
For example, the motif of fragmentation (of a family, for instance) could
come from several symbols that appear in a book:
shattered glass
an unfaithful spouse
a runaway (pet, teen, car)
Sometimes a motif can be a contrast, like "light and dark." A series of
symbols that could represent this motif might be:
moon shadows (shades of darkness)
a candle (a light in the darkness)
storm clouds (temporary darkness)
a ray of sunshine (emerging from darkness)
a tunnel (through the darkness)
ALLEGORY
Writers use allegory to add different layers of meanings to their works.
Allegory makes their stories and characters multidimensional, so that they
stand for something larger in meaning than what they literally stand for.
Allegory allows writers to put forward their moral and political point of views.
A careful study of an allegorical piece of writing can give us an insight into
writer’s mind as how he views the world and how he wishes the world to be.
An allegory is a type of extended metaphor!
ALLEGORY EXAMPLES
“Animal Farm”, written by George Orwell, is an allegory that uses animals on
a farm to describe the overthrow of the last of the Russian Tsar Nicholas II
and the Communist Revolution of Russia before WW II. The actions of the
animals on the farm are used to expose the greed and corruption of the
revolution. It also describes how powerful people can change the ideology of
a society. One of the cardinal rules on the farm for the animals is:
The animals on the farm represent different sections of the Russian society
after the revolution. For instance, “Pigs” represents those who came to power
following the revolution; “Mr. Jones” the owner of the farm represents the
overthrown Tsar Nicholas II, while “Boxer” the horse, represents the laborer
class etc. Allegory in the novel allows Orwell to make his position clear about
the Russian Revolution and expose its evils.
ALLEGORY VS. SYMBOLISM
An allegory involves using many interconnected symbols or allegorical figures in
such as way that in nearly every element of the narrative has a meaning beyond the
literal level, i.e., everything in the narrative is a symbol that relates to other symbols
within the story.
The allegorical story, poem, or play can be read either literally or as a symbolic
statement about a political, spiritual, or psychological truth.
IRONY
The use of a word or phrase to mean the exact
opposite of its literal or usual meaning;
incongruity between the actual result of a
sequence of events and the expected result.
IRONY: THE USE OF WORDS TO CONVEY A MEANING
THAT IS THE OPPOSITE OF ITS LITERAL MEANING
Verbal Irony:
Examples:
“clear as mud”
"as much fun as a root canal.
Situational Irony - Situational irony results from recognizing the oddness
or unfairness of a given situation, be it positive or negative.
Examples:
Bill Gates win’s a computer contest
Dramatic Irony:
when the words and actions of the characters of a work of literature
have a different meaning for the reader than they do for the characters.
Examples: “The Quiet Man” Shawn Kelvin who wants to avoid
conflict, is a prize fighter. Big Liam of course doesn’t know this.
Alanis Morissette: Isn't it ironic
INTERPRET
To give reasons through an explanation. To convey and
represent the meaning or understanding of a text.
All of these elements in this unit contribute to your
ability to interpret what you read.
Your quote analysis will also demonstrate your ability to
interpret significant elements of a text.
QUOTE ANALYSIS
CP: One quote analysis (formal typed paper) will
be completed at the end of the novel Tale of
Two Cities. We will be peer editing and turning
them in for a grade.
Honors: Quote Analysis Number 3
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Tale of Two Cities