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Reading is Power: Great Expectations (Charles Dickens)

A little disclaimer: this post is going to unveil the obvious truth behind Great Linguistic Expectations 🙂

Another series I’d like to launch here is book recommendations and reviews. What can I say? Linguists are pretty much always bookworms 🙂

Naturally, it would have been weird not to start with the book that served as an inspiration for this blog as my new beginning – Great Expectations by Charles Dickens.

For those of you who don’t know the plot: there was boy called Pip who came from a family of workers, helped a convict, met an old and miserable rich woman with a broken heart, fell in love with her ward, got great expectations about his future and became gentleman thanks to the convict, quite succeeded in life losing the connection with his roots and the chance to be with his love along the way but regained peace in the end. That’s a very shortened story 🙂

Charles Dickens has always been my favourite author since my very first novel of his – Oliver Twist. If I analyze the reasons why he’s the best for me, it’s mostly because whatever happens in his books, their tone is always kind of light, whether it’s lightness of happiness or light sorrow. Hope and belief always manage to be presented in his works; it gets me every time. His characters have stood the test of time – things that shape their personalities are eternal. I’m also very much into the Victorian era stuff but it’s, of course, twice less important than the messages of his books.

Coming back to Great Expectations, this book became crucial for me. I relate to the main character, Pip, a lot. I’ve never lived a life I’d like to have, but aspire to it with all my heart. Like Pip did, I also once saw that everything could be different and I haven’t stopped my attempts to reach the desirable heights since then. Fortunately, Pip’s experience showed me possible consequences of detaching from my roots too much so I’m trying to be careful with that 🙂 But who knows where my great expectations will lead me. Hopefully, it’s a nice place 🙂

You might ask why my expectations are linguistic. I see the knowledge of foreign languages and communication skills as a tool of reaching my dreams. We have a saying in Russian “Язык до Киева доведёт” (“A tongue will lead you to Kiev”) which means that you can get anywhere knowing how to communicate. Languages really open the doors so that’s basically what I’m expecting for myself 🙂

Great Expectations is a wonderful book with really deep messages. I think it would be a perfect reading  for those who dream big, who are scared of dreaming big, who need hope that everything’s going to change and those who just love classic literature.

It’s my favourite book of all and I passionately recommend it 🙂

Has anyone here read Great Expectations? What do you think of it? What are your favourites? Please, share them in the comments, I’d like to know 🙂


2 thoughts on “Reading is Power: Great Expectations (Charles Dickens)”

  • I read “Great Expextations” this summer and – to be honest – to reason for that was you, Alena) I was wondering, what is so special about this book that it has become your favourite. Dickens is a great writer so it’s obvious I liked the book, but I must admit that throughout the book I was waiting. I kept expecting Pip’s success every minute, I even remember thinking “Ok, maybe now he will finally have it”, but it never happened. So after reading the book I had a feeling of deceived hopes and a slight disappointment. I have an impression that Dickens was planning to end his novel with a complete ruin of all hopes but changed his mind at the last moment. Speaking about literature of that period, I personally prefer Victor Hugo and Honoré de Balzac: no half light – only total darkness))

    • Oh, that’s so sweet that you read it because of me 🙂 I think Dickens just wanted to show that when you try to succeed, you should always remember where you started. And it’s never good to be obsessed with anything that much. So it was a lesson for Pip and all of us 🙂

      I’m not even surprised that you prefer darker literature :)) Hugo is great, though.

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