Compare & Contrast Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

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1838: It is not yet known that every person in the world has different fingerprints, so the criminal justice system relies on eyewitness reports, confessions, and rough clues to determine who has committed crimes.

Today: Fingerprinting, DNA analysis, and sophisticated analysis of microscopic clues left at crime scenes have made the criminal justice system much more precise than it was in Dickens's day.

1838: Throughout the 1800s, a variety of crimes in England are punishable by death. In 1800, 200 types of crimes merited the death penalty. By 1837, reforms have diminished this number to 15 types of crimes.

Today: In England, there is no death penalty for any crime.

1838: Laws control the movement and daily lives of poor people who are confined to "workhouses" or "debtor's prisons" where they are starved and mistreated.

Today: England has an extensive social welfare system, which provides aid to unemployed, ill, and elderly people.

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This section contains 152 words
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Buy the Oliver Twist Study Guide
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Oliver Twist from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.