How Effective is the Opening of the Novel “Great Expectations” Essay Sample
- Pages: 3
- Word count: 626
- Rewriting Possibility: 99% (excellent)
- Category: novel
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Introduction of TOPIC
This chapter is set among desolate marshes in a ruined graveyard. The weather plays an important part in the opening chapter. Dickens describes the weather as “raw”, and “bleak”. This creates a sympathetic but chilling mood. This is ironic as the setting is ominous for a story entitled “Great Expectations”.
In the first extract we are told that Pip is from a poor background and also that he has never known what his parents looked like or knew them as people. “My first fancies regarding what they were like, were unreasonably derived from their tombstones. “
We also know that Pip had five little brothers who died very young as they gave up the struggle of life. We first meet Pip visiting the graves of his parents and brothers, which shows he is an orphan, this makes the audience feel sympathy for Pip, as he is so young, and without his parents. In my opinion I think we are meant to feel sympathy towards Pip, as he is all alone in the graveyard with no one to turn to. He is at a very low point and is very vulnerable; “…the small bundle of shivers growing afraid of it all and beginning to cry, was Pip.” This is how the adult Pip describes himself as a child. He makes himself sound so pathetic a
nd inferior. This makes the reader feel pity towards Pip. In the
Magwitch appears to be scary and intimidating, because he seems to come out of nowhere. The way Dickens describes him gives the impression that Magwitch belongs in the churchyard because they’re so alike; scary and intimidating. Although Magwitch does appear frightening at the beginning, as you read on you realise that he is very desperate and in a weak position. He needs Pip to be scared in order to survive.
When Pip wishes Magwitch goodnight Magwitch says “much of that! I wish I was a frog. Or a eel!” This shows that Magwitch would rather be anything but a man at that moment because it was such a cold, muddy and wet day which is a suitable habitat for frogs and eels. It also shows the reader a different side to Magwitch. He is not as scary and intimidating as he seemed at first, he is more humorous and like Pip; vulnerable.
Overall, this first chapter of “Great Expectations” is very effective as an opening of a novel because introduces the main characters, Pip and Magwitch first. This allows the reader to identify that these characters play an important part in the novel and encourages the reader to find out how the relationship between these two characters will grow throughout the novel, by reading on.