Dombey and Son is a novel by the Victorian author Charles Dickens. It was first published in monthly parts between October 1846 and April 1848 with the full title Dealings with the Firm of Dombey and Son: Wholesale, Retail and for Exportation. The story concerns Paul Dombey, the wealthy owner of the shipping company of the book's title, whose dream is to have a son to continue his business.
Runtime: 30 minutes
Dombey and Son - Charles Dickens - Netflix
Charles John Huffam Dickens (; 7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded by many as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era. His works enjoyed unprecedented popularity during his lifetime, and by the 20th century critics and scholars had recognised him as a literary genius. His novels and short stories are still widely read today. Born in Portsmouth, Dickens left school to work in a factory when his father was incarcerated in a debtors' prison. Despite his lack of formal education, he edited a weekly journal for 20 years, wrote 15 novels, five novellas, hundreds of short stories and non-fiction articles, lectured and performed readings extensively, was an indefatigable letter writer, and campaigned vigorously for children's rights, education, and other social reforms. Dickens's literary success began with the 1836 serial publication of The Pickwick Papers. Within a few years he had become an international literary celebrity, famous for his humour, satire, and keen observation of character and society. His novels, most published in monthly or weekly instalments, pioneered the serial publication of narrative fiction, which became the dominant Victorian mode for novel publication. Cliffhanger endings in his serial publications kept readers in suspense. The instalment format allowed Dickens to evaluate his audience's reaction, and he often modified his plot and character development based on such feedback. For example, when his wife's chiropodist expressed distress at the way Miss Mowcher in David Copperfield seemed to reflect her disabilities, Dickens improved the character with positive features. His plots were carefully constructed, and he often wove elements from topical events into his narratives. Masses of the illiterate poor chipped in ha'pennies to have each new monthly episode read to them, opening up and inspiring a new class of readers. Dickens was regarded as the literary colossus of his age. His 1843 novella, A Christmas Carol, remains popular and continues to inspire adaptations in every artistic genre. Oliver Twist and Great Expectations are also frequently adapted, and, like many of his novels, evoke images of early Victorian London. His 1859 novel, A Tale of Two Cities, set in London and Paris, is his best-known work of historical fiction. Dickens has been praised by fellow writers—from Leo Tolstoy to George Orwell, G. K. Chesterton and Tom Wolfe —for his realism, comedy, prose style, unique characterisations, and social criticism. On the other hand, Oscar Wilde, Henry James, and Virginia Woolf complained of a lack of psychological depth, loose writing, and a vein of saccharine sentimentalism. The term Dickensian is used to describe something that is reminiscent of Dickens and his writings, such as poor social conditions or comically repulsive characters.
Dombey and Son - Reception - Netflix
Dickens was the most popular novelist of his time, and remains one of the best-known and most-read of English authors. His works have never gone out of print, and have been adapted continually for the screen since the invention of cinema, with at least 200 motion pictures and TV adaptations based on Dickens's works documented. Many of his works were adapted for the stage during his own lifetime, and as early as 1913, a silent film of The Pickwick Papers was made. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era. Among fellow writers, Dickens has been both lionised and mocked. Leo Tolstoy, G. K. Chesterton, and George Orwell praised his realism, comic voice, prose fluency, and satiric caricature, as well as his passionate advocacy on behalf of children and the poor. French writer Jules Verne called Dickens his favourite writer, writing his novels “stand alone, dwarfing all others by their amazing power and felicity of expression.” Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh was inspired by Dickens's novels in several of his paintings like Vincent's Chair and in an 1889 letter to his sister stated that reading Dickens, especially A Christmas Carol, was one of the things that was keeping him from committing suicide. Oscar Wilde generally disparaged his depiction of character, while admiring his gift for caricature. His late contemporary William Wordsworth, by then Poet laureate, thought him a “very talkative, vulgar young person”, adding he had not read a line of his work; Dickens in return thought Wordsworth “a dreadful Old Ass”. Henry James denied him a premier position, calling him “the greatest of superficial novelists”: Dickens failed to endow his characters with psychological depth and the novels, “loose baggy monsters”, betrayed a “cavalier organisation”. Virginia Woolf had a love-hate relationship with his works, finding his novels “mesmerizing” while reproving him for his sentimentalism and a commonplace style. Fyodor Dostoyevsky expressed his admiration for the author, “We understand Dickens in Russia, I am convinced, almost as well as the English, perhaps even with all the nuances. It may well be that we love him no less than his compatriots do. And yet how original is Dickens, and how very English!”. A Christmas Carol is most probably his best-known story, with frequent new adaptations. It is also the most-filmed of Dickens's stories, with many versions dating from the early years of cinema. According to the historian Ronald Hutton, the current state of the observance of Christmas is largely the result of a mid-Victorian revival of the holiday spearheaded by A Christmas Carol. Dickens catalysed the emerging Christmas as a family-centred festival of generosity, in contrast to the dwindling community-based and church-centred observations, as new middle-class expectations arose. Its archetypal figures (Scrooge, Tiny Tim, the Christmas ghosts) entered into Western cultural consciousness. A prominent phrase from the tale, “Merry Christmas”, was popularised following the appearance of the story. The term Scrooge became a synonym for miser, and his dismissive exclamation 'Bah! Humbug!' likewise gained currency as an idiom. Novelist William Makepeace Thackeray called the book “a national benefit, and to every man and woman who reads it a personal kindness”.
At a time when Britain was the major economic and political power of the world, Dickens highlighted the life of the forgotten poor and disadvantaged within society. Through his journalism he campaigned on specific issues—such as sanitation and the workhouse—but his fiction probably demonstrated its greatest prowess in changing public opinion in regard to class inequalities. He often depicted the exploitation and oppression of the poor and condemned the public officials and institutions that not only allowed such abuses to exist, but flourished as a result. His most strident indictment of this condition is in Hard Times (1854), Dickens's only novel-length treatment of the industrial working class. In this work, he uses vitriol and satire to illustrate how this marginalised social stratum was termed “Hands” by the factory owners; that is, not really “people” but rather only appendages of the machines they operated. His writings inspired others, in particular journalists and political figures, to address such problems of class oppression. For example, the prison scenes in The Pickwick Papers are claimed to have been influential in having the Fleet Prison shut down. Karl Marx asserted that Dickens “issued to the world more political and social truths than have been uttered by all the professional politicians, publicists and moralists put together”. George Bernard Shaw even remarked that Great Expectations was more seditious than Marx's Das Kapital. The exceptional popularity of Dickens's novels, even those with socially oppositional themes (Bleak House, 1853; Little Dorrit, 1857; Our Mutual Friend, 1865), not only underscored his almost preternatural ability to create compelling storylines and unforgettable characters, but also ensured that the Victorian public confronted issues of social justice that had commonly been ignored. It has been argued that his technique of flooding his narratives with an 'unruly superfluity of material' that, in the gradual dénouement, yields up an unsuspected order, influenced the organisation of Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species.
Dombey and Son - References - Netflix