Read by John Wells. The greed of his family has led wealthy old Martin Chuzzlewit to become suspicious and misanthropic, leaving his grandson and namesake to make his own way in the world. And so young Martin sets out from the Wiltshire home of his supposed champion, the scheming architect Pecksniff, to seek his fortune in America. In depicting Martin's journey - an experience that teaches him to question his inherited self-interest and egotism - Dickens created many vividly realized figures: the brutish lout Jonas Chuzzlewit, plotting to gain the family fortune; Martin's optimistic manservant, Mark Tapley; gentle Tom Pinch; and the drunken and corrupt private nurse, Mrs Gamp.
With its portrayal of greed, blackmail and murder, and its searing satire on America Dickens's novel is a powerful and blackly comic story of hypocrisy and redemption. Your current browser isn't compatible with SoundCloud. He wrote: 'In the development of the brilliantly drawn Jonas Chuzzlewit, under the stress of blackmail, from a vulgar money-grabbing brute into a murderer with a dark and complicated life of inner terrors and superstitions that would have done credit to Dostoevsky'.
Alongside the villainous Jonas, other characters people the book memorably: the fabulous hypocrite Pecksniff, and Mrs Gamp, the disreputable old nurse 'dispoged' to the not altogether occasional glass of gin. Kirkus UK. One of the grand masters of Victorian literature Charles Dickens was born at Portsmouth on 7 February , the second of eight children.
Dickens's childhood experiences were similar to those depicted in David Copperfield. His father, who was a government clerk, was imprisoned for debt and Dickens was briefly sent to work in a blacking warehouse at the age of twelve.
He received little formal education, but taught himself shorthand and became a reporter of parliamentary debates for the Morning Chronicle. He began to publish sketches in various periodicals, which were subsequently republished as Sketches by Boz. The Pickwick Papers were published in —7 and after a slow start became a publishing phenomenon and Dickens's characters the centre of a popular cult.
Part of the secret of his success was the method of cheap serial publication which Dickens used for all his novels. After finishing Barnaby Rudge Dickens set off for America; he went full of enthusiasm for the young republic but, in spite of a triumphant reception, he returned disillusioned. His experiences are recorded in American Notes Martin Chuzzlewit —4 did not repeat its predecessors' success but this was quickly redressed by the huge popularity of the Christmas Books, of which the first, A Christmas Carol, appeared in During —6 Dickens travelled abroad and he began Dombey and Son while in Switzerland.
This and David Copperfield —50 were more serious in theme and more carefully planned than his early novels. In later works, such as Bleak House and Little Dorrit , Dickens's social criticism became more radical and his comedy more savage. Dickens's health was failing during the s and the physical strain of the public readings which he began in hastened his decline, although Our Mutual Friend retained some of his best comedy.
With its portrayal of greed, blackmail and murder, and its searing satire on America Dickens's novel is a powerful and blackly comic story of hypocrisy and redemption. In depicting Martin s journey an experience that teaches him to question his inherited self-interest and egotism Dickens created many vividly realized figures: the brutish lout Jonas Chuzzlewit, plotting to gain the family fortune; Martin s optimistic manservant, Mark Tapley; gentle Tom Pinch; and the drunken and corrupt private nurse, Mrs Gamp. Used for targeted ads and to document efficacy of each individual ad. Remove From Wishlist Cancel. Hard Times Penguin Classics. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.
Public grief at his death was considerable and he was buried in the Poets' Corner of Westminster Abbey. A Note on our choice The Works of Charles Dickens are available in many different editions, published by many different publishers.
The Booktopia Book Guru has recommended the Penguin Black Classic paperback editions here, as Australian readers have had a long established relationship with the Penguin Black Classic editions, with their informative and erudite introductions and notes. There are, however, other options see the series tab below.
As do many US publishing houses.
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Industry Reviews This was one of Dickens's least successful books commercially; it would be a masterpiece for most other writers. Introduction p. Pinch and Others, Nearly. Jonas p. Also of the British Lion.
Together with the Reason Why p. He Retaliates Upon a Fallen Foe p. Jonas And His Friend p. Jonas Makes Wrath, Mrs. Gamp Makes Tea, and Mr. Chuffey Makes Business p.
All Rights Reserved. Selected Short Fiction Penguin Classics. Pictures from Italy Penguin Classics.