February 07, 2012

What the Dickens…


…as Google has noted, today is the bicentenial of the birth of Our Mutual Friend. 
Would our Hard Times give him plenty of ammunition to write A Tale of…a Bleak House?
Or, perhaps, he would look ahead with Great Expectations and not discard us like an Old Curiosity Shop. 
Be a kind observer in the Pickwick Papers or The Mudfog Papers and write with a gentle Twist about The Life and Adventures of …, or The Mystery of… Our Mutual Friend(s)?
Dear Master Dickens we could use you now.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Love the post! Love Dickens!

frenchtoast said...

Yes. We're having a dickens of a time!

Anonymous said...

Charlie would feel right at home in "Our Times."

Anonymous said...

Simply delicious!! I hope this anniversary inspires a new generation of enthusiasts...

Anonymous said...

And he can be used as a pick up line:
Opening question: "Hi! What do you think of Dickens?
Response: "Dunno; never been to one".

Anonymous said...

Sadly, "Dickensian" seems an apt and timely description of the political and socioeconomic trajectory if not the landscape of contemporary society.

Bill (SM) said...

How much of what we read, listen to and watch today will be considered relevant and interesting 200 years from now? Thanks very much for a Christmas Carol, the lesson is still lost on most of us today.

Charles said...

Yes we have, celebrated, and the “Dickens” of a time. Thanks for the post.

your gaggle of fans said...

We can rejoice that so many of the evils he assailed with his ferocious quill — dismal debtors’ prisons, barefoot urchin labor, an indifferent nobility — have happily been reformed into oblivion. But one form of wickedness he decried haunts us still, proud and unrepentant: the lawyer.

SvO said...

Having fallen victim to a pickpocket on my journey through London this morning, it feels curiously appropriate that today marks the bicentenary of the birth of Charles Dickens. The great chronicler of Victorian England's underworld would probably have been amused – and literally inspired – as I was adroitly parted from my cell phone. As the country tiped its collective hat to celebrate his 200th birthday I wondered why did this most "modern" crime felt so “Dickensian” in nature?
Thanks for the post, and please keep an eye out for my cell phone.

Alan said...

Bah!Humbug!

Robert L. neighbor said...

Boy SvO this BEATS “Downtown” Abbey in sheer entertainment.

Ms. Edna (squared) said...

Dear Syl, rats. Perhaps you can persuade Sherlock to find your cellphone? Take care!

Mona said...

Charles Dickens was many things: a masterful storyteller, an ardent social campaigner and a political journalist. But he's unlikely to ever be a feminist icon.
We knew he was a cad. Dickens's daughter Katey said her father never understood women.
I think Miss Havisham was Dickens himself.
In a letter to Lavinia Watson in 1857 - when he was 45 - Dickens wrote:
"I wish I had been born in the days of ogres and dragon-guarded castles . . . I wish an ogre with seven heads had taken the princess who I adore - you have no idea how intensely I love her! - To his stronghold on the tip of a high series of mountains and there tied her up by the hair. Nothing would suit me half so well this days, as climbing after her, sword in hand, and either winning her or being killed."
Hmm, sword in hand. Perhaps it was wise of Dickens to burn his private papers and destroy his diaries.
And yet, and yet. The flawed man left us magnificent writing. And I, a lover of literature, take the balanced and generous overview that he was a genius but not a good man, when I read him his humanity transcends his cruelty.