He was born in Portsmouth in 1812. when his father was imprisoned for debts, Charles was compelled to work in a factory.
This sad experience market his life and his future as novelist.
Thanks to an economic improvement, Dickens continued his studies and became a reporter and a journalist.
He started his career as novelist, by publishing some serials, as for as example “Sketches by Boz” and “The Pickwick Papers” about the adventure of some funny me.
Thanks to these serial publications, Dickens helped common people to be interested in literary production.
Dickens can be considered a photographer of his time, because he used to take notes about what he saw also in the poor quarters of London. His interest, as we can notice in his most important social novels, “Oliver Twist”, “Hard Times”, “David Copperfield”, is for the humble, poor people, their difficult life conditions.
The main character Thomas Gradgrind is a materialistic and pragmatic man, who lives in Coketown with his 2 children.
This town is the symbol of the typical industrial squalid Reston, that is in contrast with the fantastic and joyful world of the Circus. When Thomas understands that his 2 children are not like he wanted, he realises his life was all a manses.
The novel combines both realistic and symbolical elements, while the style is rich in humour and irony.