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The writings of Charles Dickens were often critical of society and government. This satire, Little Dorrit was also an outlet for Dickens' opinion of prison, particularly debtor's prisons. There people (including Dickens' own) who failed to pay their debts were imprisoned, paradoxically unable to work, until the debt was repaid. The story of Little Dorrit (whose father is imprisoned for debt) tells of the courtship between herself and Arthur Clennam and demonstrates the grim effects of imprisonment on those within as well as those beyond but whose lives are inextricably intertwined.
Historical fiction novel. The story begins with an actual historical tragedy - the 1672 lynching of the Dutch Grand Pensionary (roughly equivalent to a modern Prime Minister) Johan de Witt and his brother Cornelis, by a wild mob of their own countrymen - one of the most painful episodes in Dutch history, described by Dumas with a dramatic intensity.
A man in the 1890s falls asleep for two hundred and three years. When he awakes, he learns that his investments have accumulated to make him the richest and most powerful man on Earth. The new London has completely transformed into a place that horrifies him and that it is his name that is used to maintain an oppressive hierarchical society where a large proportion of people are uneducated and impoverished. He is the man with the power to change things.......
The story of Hans and his sister's participation in a skating competition is interwoven with their class reading of
_The Hero of Haarlem_ (the boy who saved his country by plugging a dike with his finger).
Somehow poplular myth has transferred Han's name to the dike boy.
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