Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Christmas Carol weekend

Marla and I took our grandsons to see “A Christmas Carol” performed by the Denver Center Theatre Company.

The wonderful production was a perfect way to begin the Holidays. The Charles Dickens classic tale touches upon the transformation of a dark heart, greed & avarice to a rebirth of the kind spirit and finally happiness for all. It may be just a beloved story, but it resonates in these times more than ever.

Charles Dickens published his novella, “A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas,” in 1842. He pulled themes of social injustice and poverty from his own life and observations. The humiliation of having his father imprisoned in 1824 at Marhalsea Debtors prison for a debt of 40 pound, 10 shillings framed his view of the sad state of the poor and inspired many of his books. Charles had to leave school at 12 to work in a factory. One of my favorite Dickens stories is “Little Dorrit” which is set at Marchalsea Prison.

This is the title page of the original 1843 “A Christmas Carol” first edition with drawings by John Leech.

A transformed Scrooge “went to the church, and walked about the streets, and watched the people hurrying to and for, and patted the children on the head, and questioned beggars, and looked down into the kitchens of homes, and up to the windows, and found that everything could yield him pleasure. He has never dreamed of any walk, that could give him so much happiness.”

I love this 1844 newspaper clipping about Charles Dickens and “A Christmas Carol.”

My favorite quote from the whole book is one I would like to emulate, “I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach.”

The lessons of “A Christmas Carol” made me think of certain American politicians, some recently elected, that should definitely read the book again and reflect on the less fortunate that may need our assistance during these difficult times.

“God bless us everyone.”

***To catch a glimpse of the 1938 MGM movie of “A Christmas Carol” click below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJDBtjSCQM4&feature=related

***For a look at the magnificent BBC production of Dickens “Little Dorrit”, click on the link below.

It is a beautiful dramatization of the harsh Victorian era and debtor’s prison. It is available on Netflix. One of my favorites!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzXMljRHfas

1 comment :

  1. Great post, thought you might like my machinima version of A Christmas Carol http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9SBebs3A5I

    ReplyDelete