By Karl Ashley Smith
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This remark at the booklet of Revelation, a part of a chain designed to help laity of their learn of the Bible, makes a speciality of the modern applicability of the message of Revelation to our state of affairs is a society the place dying, injustice, and idolatry are rife.
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Extra resources for Dickens and the Unreal City: Searching for Spiritual Significance in Nineteenth-Century London
Mr Pecksniff offers the first sustained indication that society may be callously invoking Providence to cover its own evasion of duty to provide in his ‘short and pious grace, invoking a blessing on the appetites of those present, and committing all persons who had nothing to eat, to the care of Providence: whose business (so said the grace, in effect) it clearly was, to look after them’ (MC 9 p. 147). Dickens insists that this satirical portrait has a political and not merely a personal dimension, saying of Pecksniff’s statement that ‘a special Providence – has blessed my endeavours’: A question of philosophy arises here, whether Mr Pecksniff had or had not good reason to say, that he was specially patronised and encouraged in his undertakings.
I am glad to hear it,’ said Mr Podsnap with a portentous air. ‘I am glad to hear it. ’ The narrator calls this an ‘absurd and irreverent conventional phrase’, and the sympathetic ‘meek man’ says he has ‘no fear of doing anything so impossible’ (OMF I 11 p 144). Dickens could not have made his feelings on such usage of this frequently invoked concept clearer. Nevertheless, Dickens’s satires on such absurdities must not lead us to suppose that he did not believe in the concept itself. The very same novel balances Podsnap’s rhetoric with characters who unaffectedly read just such a heavenly hand in the events of the novel themselves.
415). In so far as anyone enlightens Jo, it is Woodcourt, who shows him what Christlike altruism is, instead of imparting theological information. ’ (11 p. 181). This works on the same principle as Alice Marwood’s equation of the gospel narrative with Harriet Carker’s care for her in Dombey and Son: ‘Lay my head so dear, that as you read, I may see the words in your kind face’ (48 p. 785). 22 Dickens and the Unreal City The Bible and Harriet Carker’s face are, then, two means of telling an identical story.