Dickens’ Critique of Education in Hard Times

  • 艾 德維

Student thesis: Master's Thesis

Abstract

ABSTRACT This thesis sets out to demonstrate how Dickens’ critique of education in Hard Times is a response to what he perceived to be a danger to the continuation of society: the utilitarian educational method used in the Birkbeck schools whose founder was highly influential in education during the time the novel was written In a discussion of the ideas of Richard Aldrich R G Collingwood John Dewey John Henry Newman and Raymond Williams it affirms that education is the means by which a society progresses from generation to generation It includes analysis of the methods used in the Birkbeck schools and Dickens’ view that replacing education with utilitarian education is harmful to society because the latter does not promote values that ensure the continuation of society In addition this thesis discusses how the lives of Louisa and Tom Gradgrind are ruined by a utilitarian educational method as they are unable to integrate successfully into society because their moral empathic emotional and imaginative capacities were not nurtured when they were children By studying Hard Times as a commentary on educational issues in England during the 1850s my thesis offers a new conception of the novel as a historical resource Keywords: education Birkbeck schools utilitarian Hard Times Dickens
Date of Award2014 Aug 29
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorChao-Fang Chen (Supervisor)

Cite this

Dickens’ Critique of Education in Hard Times
德維, 艾. (Author). 2014 Aug 29

Student thesis: Master's Thesis