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Dickens’s David Copperfield – Part I

Dr. White discusses Charles Dickens’ great gift for characterization, which extended even to very minor characters. He gives specific examples of this from David Copperfield, including the based-on-life character of Miss Moucher. Next, Dr. White discusses some of the author’s literary devices, including his masterful foreshadowing and the device of having a double perspective from the narrator: David experiences things as a child, and the elder David who is narrating looks back on it as an adult, giving an adult’s perspective. Indeed, Dr. White points out, the novel is somewhat autobiographical, and Dickens in examining David Copperfield’s life examines his own. Useful or important passages of the novel are read and explained. Dr. White discusses the overwhelmingly female world that David is born to, giving him no male figure to look up to. This section ends with a look at the scene in which Copperfield discovers that his mother is going to be remarried to Mr. Murdstone.

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