Delineation of the Child's Mind in David Copperfield


  • Mohammad Ahashan Research Scholar, Dept. Of English Modern European Languages, University of Allahabad, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India


David Copperfield is a novel by Charles Dickens, published in 1849-50. ' Of all my books,' wrote Dickens, ' I like this the best.' It has always been a favourite with a wide public, and has been filmed and adapted for television on numerous occasions. As per the Oxford Companion to English Literature the aforesaid novel is '' the most autobiographical of Dickens's novels, it was the first to be written as a first-person narrative, showing how the young David learns to govern the first mistaken impulse of the undisciplined heart.'' (275). It is a strenuous task for any novelist to deal successfully with the life of a child as the centre of his art. Only a polymath is capable of delineating the child's mind and make a success of it. The novelist has got to be as simple as a child in his temperament to understand the psyche and pneuma of a child and yet have the skill of an artist. It is Dickens alone who could draw his children's characters sympathetically and convincingly. Childhood is the most crucial stage in everyone's life because this is the time when all the little things around us including the family members, neighbours, societal layout, social relations and other circumstances make so much impact in our mind and consequently this effect leads us into different stages of our life. Dickens childhood was not that easy as it is supposed to be, he left school to work in a factory when his father was  imprisoned and incarcerated in debtor's prison. He faces the brutality of life while working in a factory in a very early age of his life and that is why he got so much success in showing how the society works around and affect the child's life. Dickens could not easily forget his own experiences as child. The delectation, sorrows and joys of his childhood were always fresh and newfangled in his memory. Thus he was able to present them with the curiosity or zeal of a young child. Moreover, his imagination worked upon his intense, child-like vision of the world to produce something which was rich and unique in the field of literature. His insight in to the mind of a child is really stupendous, wondrous, eye-catching and amazeballs. He makes children highly individual. David Copperfield and Great Expectations are autobiographical in the line of narration. The heroes of the aforesaid novels narrate their bitter and tormenting experiences of childhood which was full of severe physical or mental suffering. Both of them have been terrified, unwanted and helpless in their childhood. In George Orwell's opinion no English writer has written better about child life than Dickens.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...




How to Cite

Ahashan, M. (2019). Delineation of the Child’s Mind in David Copperfield. SMART MOVES JOURNAL IJELLH, 7(3), 9. Retrieved from