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Oliver Twist

by Charles Dickens

Part of the Norton Critical Editions Series

Oliver Twist Synopsis

The editor has corrected printers' errors and annotated unfamiliar terms and allusions. Three illustrations by George Cruikshank and a map of Oliver's London accompany the text. Backgrounds and Sources focuses on The Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834, central both to Dickens and to the characters in Oliver Twist. The act's far-reaching implications are considered in source materials that include parlimentary debates on The Poor Laws, a harrowing account of an 1835 Bedfordshire riot, and An Appeal to Fallen Women, Dickens' 1847 open letter to London's prostitutes urging them to turn their backs on debauchery and neglect. Ten letters on Oliver Twist, written between 1837 and 1864, are reprinted, including those to the novel's publisher, the novel's illustrator, and John Forster, Dickens' close friend and future biographer. In addition, readers can trace the evolution of the novel by examining Dickens' installment and chapter-division plans and enjoy Sikes and Nancy, the text of a public reading Dickens composed and performed often to large audiences. Early Reviews provides eight witty, insightful, and at times impassioned responses to the novel and to Oliver's plight by William Makepeace Thackeray and John Forster (anonymously), among others. Criticism includes twenty of the most significant interpretations of Oliver Twist published in this century. Included are essays by Henry James, George Gissing, Graham Greene, J. Hillis Miller, Harry Stone, Philip Collins, John Bayley, Keith Hollingsworth, Steven Marcus, Monroe Engel, James R. Kincaid, Michael Slater, Dennis Walder, Burton M. Wheeler, Janet Larson, Fred Kaplan, Robert Tracy, David Miller, John O. Jordan, and Gary Wills. A Chronology and Selected Bibliography are also included.

Book Information

ISBN: 9780393962925
Publication date: 17th December 1992
Author: Charles Dickens
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 624 pages
Categories: Literary studies: fiction, novelists & prose writers, Literary studies: c 1800 to c 1900 , Classic fiction (pre c 1945),

About Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) is one of the most acclaimed and popular writers of all time. His many works include the classics The Old Curiosity Shop, Oliver Twist, Nicholas Nickleby, Barnaby Rudge, A Christmas Carol, A Tale of Two Cities, David Copperfield, Great Expectations, Bleak House, Hard Times, Our Mutual Friend, The Pickwick Papers and many more. Fred Kaplan is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English at Queens College and The Graduate Center, City University of New York. A biographer and literary scholar, he is the author of John Quincy Adams: American Visionary, The Singular Mark Twain: A Biography, Lincoln: The Biography ...

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