Essay on A Tale Of Two Cities: Best Or Worst Of Times?

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In the novel "A Tale of Two Cities" Charles Dickens describes "the best of times [and] the worst of times" (1) of the characters. France and England struggle through political confusion, which is one of the most disturbing periods of history. On the other hand, for the characters of the novel, these are the times of rebirth and revival. The author conveys the dual nature of this epoch by contrasting representations of light and dark, chaos and stability, doom and hope with the use of setting, characterization, foreshadowing, symbolism, and plot set up. The novel opens in the troubled year of 1775, with a comparison of England and pre-Revolutionary France. It conveys the sense of doom and chaos. Both countries go…show more content…
Manette, his being "recalled to life." (6) After eighteen years of imprisonment, he finds his daughter, and Lucie Manette finds her father who has been dead for her. Lucie Manette promises to him that they will "go to England to be at peace and at rest" (40). Despite the social and political disorder, these are the times of hope for Lucie Manette and her father. The twofold nature of the novel, both light and dark, hope and doom, is reflected in foreshadowing and symbolism. The spilling of red wine is a premonition of blood to be shed in the Revolution. "All the people within reach had suspended their business, or their idleness, to run to the spot and drink he wine." (24) There will be people in the Revolution who will, figuratively, drink the blood like the wine. Another foreboding of the long and hard road of the Revolution is the image of the mail that goes up the hill along the difficult and dangerous Dover road. No travelers who venture on it are secure. "If any one of [the passengers] had the hardihood to propose another walk in the mist and darkness, he would have put himself in a fair way of getting shot instantly by a highwayman." (5) In the mist of the night road, there is the air of distrust and separateness. "The guard suspected the passengers, the passengers suspected one another and the guard, they all suspected

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