Essay on Oliver Twist : A Character Or Victim?

1153 Words Dec 15th, 2014 5 Pages
Criminal? Or Victim? “ 'But even if [Oliver Twist] has been wicked, ' pursed Rose, 'think how young he is, think that he may never have known a mother 's love, or the comfort of a home; and that ill-usage and blows, or the want of bread, may have driven him to herd with men who have forced him to guilt. Aunt, dear aunt, for mercy 's sake, think of this, before you let them drag this sick child to a prison, which in any case must be the grave of all his chances of amendment. '"(Dickens, 201-202). Although Oliver Twist is a fictional character, his story is similar to the thousands of children who suffered during the industrial revolution in the 18th and 19th century (Brostowicz). The revolution started in England because the nation had the necessary resources as well as a supportive government (Brostowicz). But it quickly spread to other European countries and America (White). Although industrialization leads to higher standards of living for some, it also leads to more people falling below the poverty line and horrible living conditions for them. With no other option, these individuals, and often times children, have to commit crimes to support themselves. Due to the rising poverty rates caused by industrialization, an increasing number of children turn to crime- pickpocketing being one of the more common.
Pickpocketing is a relatively simple concept, so it is not surprising that children turn to it over other over crimes, especially violent ones. At it’s most basic form,…

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