Hard Times | Critical Essay by A. O. J. Cockshut

This literature criticism consists of approximately 6 pages of analysis & critique of Hard Times.
This section contains 1,555 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
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SOURCE: "Hard Times-Dickens's Masterpiece?" in The Imagination of Charles Dickens, Collins, 1961, p. 137-42.

In the essay below, Cockshut seeks to demonstrate—contra F. R. Leavisthat Hard Times is not Dickens's masterpiece. He does, however, consider it a novel of high accomplishment.

Dr. Leavis has performed a valuable service by focusing attention on Hard Times, an important and neglected work. Those of us who do not quite agree with him about its quality are nevertheless grateful.

The leading idea of the book is proclaimed in the contrast between its subject, industrial society, and the titles of its three sections—Sowing, Reaping and Garnering. The intention, carried out at times with great subtlety and at times with a rather weary obviousness, was to show inherent life and growth conquering theory and calculation. This approach tends to break down the stock distinctions...

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This section contains 1,555 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by A. O. J. Cockshut
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Literature Criticism Series
Critical Essay by A. O. J. Cockshut from Literature Criticism Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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