Charles Dicken’s A Tale of Two Cities

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Orison Swett Marden, an author known for his works in philosophy once wrote, “You will be modified, shaped, molded by your surroundings, by the character of the people with whom you come in contact”. Using these words, Marden summarizes what factors influence humans and shape how they turn out. A similar scenario appears in Charles Dicken’s A Tale of Two Cities, where two characters are initially driven by their love for different people, but soon turn into complete opposites. Madame DeFarge, fueled by love, turns evil, while Sydney Carton, a lazy alcoholic, takes charge of his life after being motivated by love. The factor that separates their paths is their surroundings: Madame DeFarge lives in France, while Sydney Carton…show more content…
By strange stern ways, and through much staining of blood, those feet had come to meet that water” (3.14.376). Since she is one of them, she is already passionate about exterminating the nobility, but it also fits in well with her goal of exterminating the Evrémonde family. Hence, this revolution and her surroundings stop Madame DeFarge from recovering from her childhood and it serves as a constant opportunity that will allow her to exact revenge from her family. In addition, this revolution lets her love take the wrong direction. Mr. Carton, on the other hand, is impacted by his love for Lucie Manette in a big way because he goes from being a lazy alcoholic to a making a great sacrifice for those Lucie cares about. Sydney Carton initially describes himself by saying: "I am a disappointed drudge, sir. I care for no man on earth, and no man on earth cares for me" (2.4.70). He has no goals in life and is hopeless at a young age because he mostly wanders through streets, drunk and wasting his potential. However, this changes when he confronts Lucie about his love for her because he mends his ways and does something Lucie can remember him for. He tells her, crying and promising to change, that “O Miss Manette…when you see your own bright beauty springing up anew...think...there is a man who would give his life, to keep a life you love beside you!"
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