Great Expectations 3


The very title of this book indicates the confidence of conscious
genius. In a new aspirant for public favor, such a title might have
been a good device to attract attention; but the most famous
novelist of the day, watched by jealous rivals and critics, could
hardly have selected it, had he not inwardly felt the capacity to
meet all the expectations he raised. I have read it as it appeared in
installments, and can testify to the felicity with which expectation
was excited and prolonged, and to the series of surprises which
accompanied the unfolding of the plot of the story. In no other of
his romances has the author succeeded so perfectly in at once
stimulating and baffling ...

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Even after the
first, second, third, and even fourth of these surprises gave their
pleasing electric shocks to intelligent curiosity, the denouement
was still hidden, though confidentially foretold. The plot of the
romance is therefore universally admitted to be the best that
Dickens has ever invented. Its leading events are, as we read the
story consecutively, artistically necessary, yet, at the same time,
the processes are artistically concealed. We follow the movement of
a logic of passion and character, the real premises of which we
detect only when we are startled by the conclusions.
The plot of Great Expectations is also noticeable as indicating,
better than any of his previous stories, the individuality of
Dickens's genius. Everybody must have discerned in the action of his
mind two diverging tendencies, which in this novel, are harmonized.
He possess a singularly wide, clear, and minute power of accurate
observation, both of things and of ...

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is
an absence of both directing ideas and disturbing idealizations.
Everything drifts to its end, as in real life. In Great Expectations
there is shown a power of external observation finer and deeper even
than Thackeray's; and yet, owing to the presence of other qualities,
the general impression is not one of objective reality. The author
palpably uses his observations as materials for his creative
faculties to work upon; he does not record, but invents; and he
produces something which is natural only under conditions prescribed
by his own mind. He shapes, disposes, penetrates, colors, and
contrives everything, and the whole action is a series of events
which ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 7/12/2004 11:24:44 PM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1381
Pages: 6

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