A Christmas Carol (Structure) by Charles Dickens

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Structurally features in A Christmas carol

  • Time is very important in A Christmas Carol, which is structurally centered around distinct elements of Past, Present, and Future. But, the time scheme of the story itself seems to make little sense. On Christmas Eve, Jacob Marley's ghost tells Scrooge that he will be visited by three ghosts on three successive nights. On Christmas morning, Scrooge awakes, having already been visited by all three ghosts. The three nights seem to be compressed into a single night. The presence of the spirits apparently bends the normal flow of time. A view further supported by the fact that Scrooge goes to bed at two o'clock in the morning after Marley's visitation and awakes at midnight the same night-two hours after he fell asleep. Dickens uses the temporal inconsistencies to emphasize the supernatural powers of the spirits when they are around, normal earthly standards, including the flow of time, have no effect.
  • Preface - Charles uses the preface of the novella to conect with the reader on a

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