Great Expectations?

This paper discusses realistic, romantic, and gothic elements in Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations.

This paper explains that, in ?Great Expectations?, Dickens uses realism through social class and psychology, romanticism through his characters? aspirations, and gothicism through the setting, supernatural elements, and the characters themselves. The author points out, as contradictory as these elements may be, together in the novel, they provide for a story that is loyal to the ever-present instability of human nature itself and the journey in experience and growth. The paper relates that the gothic elements in this novel include such events as supernatural events, shadowy, sinister settings, and actions driven by revenge.
Realism in a romantic novel is a necessary base from which to rise or stray. When we meet the main character Pip at a very young age, it is clear that he is a practical child and despite his immaturity of age he is logical boy, with a sensitive soul. As a young boy, Pip accepts his station in life, and carries out his life’s responsibilities as necessary. This novel is also very accurate in its realistic representation of social structure and class differences. Pip starts out low on the social chain, only above the criminal, impoverished class, and early in life he recognizes that there is a lower scale than the one he belongs to. When Pip helps the convict Magwitch on the marshes, he observes how uncouth and low Magwitch is, and he fears that in helping him or reaching to his level that he will be cast down to the same place.