Hard Times Continued…..

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We had great fun this morning exploring the way Thomas Gradgrind (Sir!) introduces himself in his own mind to the classroom full of little pitchers. Here he accosts Sissy Jupe for her lack of factual knowledge about horses and praises wonderful Bitzer for his “bitzy” factual knowledge of a horse. Thank you Angelina and Steph for gallantly stepping into those roles!!!!

Here is the audio of our exploration of this passage and of other relevant elements for our upcoming essay.

We then had a wonderful tutorial in which we explored what was fundamentally lacking in Louisa Gradgrind’s upbringing. Dickens is so powerfully poetic in his depictions here. Enjoy the discussions:


Blog Questions arising from Week 7:


So what questions can I cook up for your Blogs this week:

CREATIVE   Write a letter to Mr Gradgrind telling him what you think about the way he treated his own daughter, particularly with reference to the marriage arrangements he has created.

CRITICAL Take an passage from Hard Times (a paragraph long) and explain why and how this paragraph is important to the key themes of the novel.

CREATIVE You are Sissy Jupe. In a short paragraph tell Louisa what it has been like living in a circus for most of your life. Tell her what you have enjoyed and what your relationships have been like with other people in the circus.

CRITICAL Explore The Victorian Web: http://victorianweb.org/ and give a brief account of how valuable this site can be for a comprehensive study of all aspects of Charles Dickens’ work. Provide links to some of the most important things you found there.

CREATIVE Write a song, sung by Mr Thleary, about how he thinks people should lead their lives.

CRITICAL Explore the meaning of the catch phrase “The Condition of England”. Can you say how this phrase applies to the novel Hard Times.

CREATIVE/CRITICAL Create your own topic on any aspect of this week’s work drawing on both the literature studied and on your own personal experience.

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