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Title- What is its significance? The significance of the title is that it tells us that the story is going to take place in two locations, London and Paris. We can assume that the two cities are going to be connected by the tale, or the story as the title suggests.List 5-8 important pieces of biographical information that is directly relevant to the work and the distinguishing characteristics of the author. Include such things as sociopolitical factors that influenced the author and the impact of his or her work. Biographical InformationSignificance to the WorkSocial:”Dickens believed in the ethical and political potential of literature, and the novel in particular, and he treated his fiction as a springboard for debates about moral and social reform. In his novels of social analysis Dickens became an outspoken critic of unjust economic and social conditions. His deeply-felt social commentaries helped raise the collective awareness of the reading public. Dickens contributed significantly to the emergence of public opinion which was gaining an increasing influence on the decisions of the authorities. Indirectly, he contributed to a series of legal reforms, including the abolition of the inhumane imprisonment for debts, purification of the Magistrates’ courts, a better management of criminal prisons, and the restriction of the capital punishment.” (Diniejko, Andrzej) This is significant to Dickens work “A Tale of Two Cities”, because we notice a lot of things having to do with the treatment of women and the poor in the story. Since Dickens was very outspoken about these sort of things, then it is no surprise that he would mention them in his books. He in no way left out any struggle to make sure they all left a lasting effect on the reader.Religion: ” Dickens was a man of Christian faith, though he distrusted the institution of religion, particularly the fire-and-brimstone, outspoken evangelicals of Victorian England.”(“The Hollowverse”)We do not see religion much in “A Tale of Two Cities”, but there are things like resurrection. Dr Alexandre Manette is resurrected when he goes out to rescue Darnay and seems like his old self again. Carton references many quotes from the bible at the ending chapters in Book 3 like “”I am the resurrection and the life, saith the Lord: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in me, shall never die” (Book 3, Chapter 9) and he is selfless and sacrifices himself for the good of others. Poverty: “Certainly Dickens was sympathetic to the working poor—what he would have considered to be the good or “deserving” poor.” (“What Was Dickens’s Attitude toward the Poor?”)”In his own time, Dickens was seen as a champion of “the poor” by some of the poor themselves. (One of the street sellers Henry Mayhew interviewed in 1851 said Dickens was a great favorite of the “patterers” who sold ballads and other materials on the street; Silas Wegg in Our Mutual Friend is a patterer.) Author and critic G.K. Chesterton (1874 – 1936) characterized Dickens as “the spokesman of the poor”—a label that was almost immediately challenged by George Orwell, among others. But whatever ambivalences Dickens, like his contemporaries, had about poverty and the poor, one of his greatest achievements was to bring the problem of poverty to the attention of his readers through introducing varieties of poor persons into almost all of his novels, and showing the “deserving” majority of the poor, bravely struggling against the forces arrayed against them.” (“What Was Dickens’s Attitude toward the Poor?”)When Dickens was young, his father got into debt and he had to work at a factory as a child for about a year. He experienced the horrible conditions that people had to work in, and mentioned poverty many times in a “Tale of Two Cities”. In fact, him mentioning poverty was perfect for this sort of book, because it was the working class, who were poor, that participated in the revolution. And we can see examples of how they were treated, like when Gaspard’s child got run over, and the Marquis tossed him a gold coin. Madame Defarge’s family being tortured by the St. Evremondes also shows injustices amongst the poor. It is in these ways that Charles Dickens showed how the less fortunate were treated in his books and therefore helped them by raising awareness. Marriage: Charles Dickens married his wife Catherine Hogarth in 1836. They had ten children together, but then they decided to get separated after 22 years in 1858. He had met another woman names Ellen Ternan who was his companion until he died. (“The Marriage of Charles Dickens”, summary)Dickens had a good marriage life until more than twenty years after his marriage when he felt like he wasn’t satisfied and felt suffocated by it. However, in the “Tale of Two Cities”, Lucie and Charles Darnay have a good relationship, probably like Dickens did for the first twenty years or so.Future Influences: “Almost every one of his books had a message for the world to see, and to find inspiration in. Charles Dickens showed that he was a leader, as all of his works were a call to action, a declaration of war on the poverty and unjust systems that forced the poor to continually suffer. Any politician could make speeches about the harsh life of the poor and fail to make so much as a dent in the the minds of the people, but the writing of Charles Dickens got through to them and forced them to really see the suffering of the poor, and that is his legacy. He made people realize that they could not simply ignore the problems of the world and hope they would go away. He made them sympathize with those who suffered, and this spurred them to do something to help. Charles Dickens has changed the world by making them see that people struggling to live are people just like them, and that anyone can make a difference by speaking out against injustice.”(“The Influence of Charles Dickens.”)Dickens’ legacy was showing problems in society through his books, and doing something about it in his lifetime. He made the more fortunate want to do somethings to help those that weren’t, and created change in that way. His books were how he influenced and reached out to his audience to bring about the effect that he wanted society to gain.        3.   List 8-12 of the most significant events of the story.Dr. Manette was released from the North Tower of the Bastille. Lucie falls in love with and marries Charles Darnay.The French Revolution.Darnay goes to France again.Sydney Carton sacrifices his life for Darnay for Lucie’s happiness.Lucie meets with her father for the first time since she was a child.The storming of the Bastille.Darnay tried for treason in London.Darnay is found innocent when put on trial in Paris, then guilty.        4.    Identify the significance of the opening sceneThe opening scene in “The Tale of Two Cities” is significant, because it introduces what the story is going to be like. ” It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness,  it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair…” (Dickens)The juxtaposition between the words tells us that the story is going to be comparing and contrasting a lot of themes throughout the book.        5. Identify the significance of the ending/ closing sceneThe closing part is interesting because instead of ending from third-person to first-person.Carton’s act of kindness and true love seemed to have an effect on the narrator taking control. Carton repeats ” I see”, hinting towards some religious reverence, such as him going to a more sublime realm. Carton is shown as religious so this all corresponds to resurrection and transformation.        6. Explain the significance of the setting?The significance of the setting being in London and Paris shows us how those cities connect together, and why. Although Paris is pretty far away from London, the characters still manage to connect everything back to them.        7. Fill in the chart for major characters, most important characters first CharacterRole in storySignificance of character to the workTwo adjectives describing him/herCharles DarnayHusband of Lucie ManetteHe is the hero type of the story because of his opposition of the MarquisHonorable and Courageous Doc.Alexandre ManetteLucie Manette’s FatherHe is used to raise the motif of the mystery of every human being.Mysterious and SufferingLucie ManetteDaughter of Doctor ManetteIs an archetype of compassionate feelings. She holds her family together, and her love transforms the people around her.Kind and CompassionateSydney CartonWorks with StryverAn indifferent attorney who has no real pursuits of his own, and an alcoholism problem. He sacrifices himself for Lucie and Charles.Damaged and LovingMadame DefargeWife of Monsieur DefargeHates the Manettes, the Marquis, and will do anything to bring about her Revolution.Vengeful and HatefulJarvis LorryFriend of Lucie and Doctor ManetteHe is a kind business man who works for a bank, he has a kind and honest heart. He is extremely trustworthy and loyal to the Manettes.Helpful and ProtectiveMr. StryverAssociate of Sydney CartonA lawyer with ambitions, who wants to climb the social ladder.Proud and Foolish       8. Write two thematic statements about the text. Briefly explain how each theme is developed in the text.ThemeHow theme is developed in textSacrifice: There cannot be change without sacrifice.This theme is developed in the text, especially at the end when Sydney Carton sacrifices himself for the good of Charles and Lucie. In a way, he gets redemption in doing so, and is portrayed like a hero.Social Injustice:If there is social injustice then a country cannot prosper.We see this theme developed in the text by the actions of rich people like the Marquis when he ran over the child, and when the situation in France was so bad that the working class decided to create the French Revolution to improve their lives.   9. Identify 6-8 short, memorable, significant quotes from the text. Identify the speaker (if appropriate), the situation, and the significance of the quote.Speaker/pageQuoteSignificanceBook 1, Chapter 2, The Mail”Keep where you are because, if I should make a mistake, it could never be set right in your lifetime.”This quote shows how significant the decisions and choices will be throughout the length of the story.Book 2, Chapter 1, Five Years Later”But indeed, at that time, putting to death was a recipe much in vogue with all trades and professions, and not least of all with Tellson’s. This quote shows the theme of death shown throughout the story.Book 2, Chapter 4, Congratulatory”I am a disappointed drudge, sir. I care for no man on earth and no man on earth cares for me.”It shows Carton, and how he doesn’t really care about anything, least of all himself.Book 2, Chapter 5, The Jackal”Sadly, sadly, the sun rose; it rose upon no sadder sight than the man of good abilities and good emotions, incapable to his own help and his own happiness, sensible of the blight on him, and resigning himself to let it eat him away.”It looks down on the man, because the man is broken, this quote is meant to evoke a feeling of sadness.Book 3, Chapter 9, The Gorgon’s Head”Repression is the only lasting philosophy.”This quote shows that people in the book can feel restrained from their true selves, having to keep up with social norms.Book 3, Chapter 15, The Footsteps Die Out Forever”It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done: it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.”This Cartons final thought before he sacrifices himself, being freed from the world which showed him no promise, or no opportunity.     10. Identify the major archetypes (use the handout from class), how it is shown in the text, and explain the significance as it relates to theme.Archetype/how it is shownSignificance to themeRedThis relates to the theme of violence in the french revolution. The people that supported the French Revolution are seen wearing red caps. This represents the bloodshed and anger that they have had. When the revolutionaries start dancing in Chapter 5 of Book 3, they turn something innocent into more vicious and corrupt.Light and DarkAt the very beginning of the story, light and dark are mentioned, as well as other contrasting themes. This shows that there are going to be many opposing sides in the story. For example, Lucie Manette and Madame Defarge are examples of light and dark. It even mentioned in the story that Madame Defarge “shadowed” over Lucie. Lucie is very compassionate and kind, almost the exact opposite of Madame Defarge.HeroAlthough the hero in the story is switched from Charles Darnay to Alexandre Manette to Sydney Carton, the hero is someone who is always present in the story. they  are always someone who is trying to defeat the evil in the world, which in the case of the story is Madame Defarge and the revolutioners in the third section of the book.     11. Identify the following elements and their significance. There will likely be more than one for symbol, motif and imagery. Include other optional elements as significant: point of view, allusion, etc.Literary Element/how it is shownSignificanceSymbol: Broken cask of wineIt is a symbol of blood soon to be spilled by the French Revolution.Symbol: Wood SawyerForeshadows people getting killed by a guillotine.Motif: DoublingThere is doubling throughout the story. Dr Alexandre Manette was in prison, and after he gets released, Charles Darnay gets thrown in as well. Motif: ImprisonmentImprisonment can represent shadows and darkness, not always literally.Imagery: When the Marquis ran over the child with his cartIt shows that the Marquis does not care for human life, and is extremely greedy and only cares for money. It shows that there is a lot of corruption in France and that there is need for change.Imagery: When Carton believes in resurrection and transformation.Its significance is shown by proving that Carton is religious. Carton gains redemption when he sacrifices himself and transforms his image.Diction and Syntax: Throughout the bookDickens uses imagery to show in vivid detail every scene, and to bring it all to life, the sentences themselves show the scene alive. The book is very detailed and Dickens uses words to create symbolism, themes and motifs to improve his book.Structure: The way Dickens structures France and shows the development of characters.Dickens illustrates extremely well how the character develop in their environments and how they could only become that way in that specific place.Tone: Sympathetic toneDickens sympathetic tone corresponds to his understanding attitude throughout the novel.


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