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The Paradox of Utilitarianism in Hard Times: A Critical Approach

نویسنده:

علمی-پژوهشی/ISC (30 صفحه - از 141 تا 170)

کلیدواژه ها :

The Victorian Age; the philosophy of utilitarianism; educational utilitarianism; social utilitarianism; economic utilitarianism

کلید واژه های ماشینی : In Gradgrind Bounderby Gradgrind Louisa، Hard Times، Dickens، Victorian، In Bitzer Sissy Jupe Dickens، In Josia Dickens English Victorian، It Stephen Blackpool Charles Dickens، Louisa، The Victorian Age Paradoxical England، The Victorian

The Victorian Age is Paradoxical in England. On the one hand, it is the age of skepticism and pessimism. On the other hand, it is the period of prosperity and optimism. The philosophy of utilitarianism makes a good manifestation of this paradox. And Charles Dickens is pessimistic about utilitarianism, for he believes it is abused in the Victorian England. To see how Dickens illustrates abused utilitarianism, this article examines Hard Times (1989), a novel that is, as Ronald Carter and John Mcrae (2004) assert, "in many fields the most accessible critique of the society he [Dickens] lived in (253). It will discuss the educational, social, and economic aspects of utilitarianism as exemplified in the novel. For each aspect it will deliver some manifestations. Regarding the educational system, the focus is on the ideas that Dickens'''' society is deeply negligent of the logic of the heart, and that the people are denied individuality. Regarding the social aspect the focus is on the ideas of law corruption and individual alienation. And regarding the economic aspect, the ideas of widespread poverty and irresponsibility of the rich to the poor are highlighted.

خلاصه ماشینی: "com/classicnotes) from Bounderby''''s house, or of Cicilia Jupe in Bounderby''''s factory, or of Signor Jupe after he deserts his daughter and goes to his own destination, or of Mrs. Pegler, Bounderby''''s self-sacrificing mother from whom he intentionally takes distance, or of Bitzer, a duplicate of Bunderby, after he fails to apprehend Tom as a thief, or of Tom after he is banished from his homeland, or of Jane and Adam Smith Gradgrind after Cicilia leaves them, is the question in reply to which the Victorian English society has perhaps nothing to say. The question is weather Hard Times shows the Victorian English society immune to the abused educational and economic utilitarianisms of Gradgrind and Bounderby, or if it will go gangrenous morally or whatever. The reality of good characters like Stephen Blackpool As Walter Allen (1968) says, in Hard Times Dickens is "attacking a whole social system in all its complexity whatever it seems to him to impede or prevent the flow of impulse between man and man, the exercise of the natural kindliness and trust" (188). Therefore, soon he will arrange for Mr. Sleary, the circus owner, to help Tom escape from Bitzer, Bounderby''''s exemplary, whom he has sent to arrest Tom. Although by so doing Dickens manifests the English Victorian law as antihumanitarian, and, as the result, open to disobedience, law corruption makes another negative aspect of the English Victorian utilitarianism which will be discussed in the second part of this article."

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