Little Dorrit

Little Dorrit

Charles Dickens

Finished November 16, 2013

It was difficult for William Dorrit to maintain dignity when he begged visitors for gratuities. He fooled himself.

His son, Tip, was not deserving of the honor he demanded, because he was not earning his own way.

Amy was admirable.

So was Arthur Clennam.

I relied on the movie to turn the characters into flesh and blood. I usually prefer the book standing alone. I also missed important plot elements and the movie helped me. At the wrapping up scene, I wondered many things: what happened to Mrs. Clennam; what was in the box; what did Amy’s note say; what caused the explosion; what happened to Miss Wade; was she illegitimate; by whom; did Gowans come back; what financial swindle was Mrs. Clennam tied up in. Even after seeing the final episode of the movie, I am unclear about some things.

Dickens left me out of much with his complex prose. I was surprised to find the book so challenging.

I think main lessons were about the real and illusory methods of asserting worth and earning respect. Blandois demanded it but was least worthy.

I doubt I will read this again.

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