The Images Within Us All: A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens

1273 WordsJul 10, 20186 Pages
The French Revolution from 1789 to 1799 was a time of uprising in France, followed by the decline of monarchies and the rise of democracy and nationalism. A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens, is set in the cities of Paris and London and flawlessly captures the angst and changing times of these places during this unforgettable period. Dickens extensively researched the events that occurred to set up perfect scenes that stick with the reader even after the novel is finished. Dickens masterfully uses the literary element of imagery throughout the novel to enforce his theme of man’s inhumanity toward his fellow man and to first create a sense of sympathy towards the peasants with an underlining feeling of hatred towards the nobles, then…show more content…
Nevertheless, these two men are also able to help themselves. Charles Darnay is the perfect example when he decides to exile himself from his cruel family. Darnay renounces his family when he declares, “This property and France are lost to me… I renounce them… It is a crumbling tower of waste, mismanagement, extortion, debt, mortgage, oppression, hunger, nakedness, and suffering… it is not for me. There is a curse on it, and on all this land,” (95). Darnay’s words give the reader a crystal clear view of the type of man Charles is to perform this difficult action of leaving his family, but also the type of family he is leaving. Charles’s actions prove that he is different from the other nobles; he is aware of the damaging deeds they have done and wants no part of it. Darnay’s willingness to change is mirrored through his fellow companion, Sydney Carton. From the start, the reader has had a strong sympathy for Carton beginning when he declared that he might not like himself. Later in the novel though, when Carton declares to Darnay, “I wish we might be friends… I was insufferable about liking you, and not liking you. I wish you would forget it,” the reader now fully understands who Carton is (159). He is a tired man who is trying so profoundly to change and just wants the friendship of the only people he loves as he continues in life. The reader slowly begins to love Carton as well, as he
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