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Examples of Charles Dickens Chthonic Journeys

Question- In Charles Dickens autobiographical memoir Fragments of an Autobiography what are three chthonic journeys that he faces?

In Charles Dickens autobiographical memoir Fragments of an Autobiography he has many chthonic journeys that he never fully recovered from. The essay starts off with Charles Dickens having to work at a blacking warehouse with a pay of six pints at the age of ten or twelve, even though he wants to go to school. His father is in jail due to money problems, which leaves the family with no money to pay their rent. As a result Charles goes to live with a friend and the rest of his family goes to live with the father in jail because they have no other place to go. He faces numerous chthonic journeys, or journeys to the underworld, including his terrible family life, his poor work conditions and low pay, which leads to money problems and his having to work even though he wants to go to school and get an education.

Throughout the essay there are countless examples as to how Dickens experienced chthonic journeys. One is that his family is in terrible condition. His father is in jail due to money problems, which then left the family with no money to pay their rent. Their father/husband borrowed money from people and never repaid them. Back in the

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1800 s if you owed people money and couldn t pay them back you would go to jail. With no house to live in everybody but Charles Dickens goes to live in jail with their father

because they have no place to live. On the other hand Charles Dickens goes to live with friend. With all of this happening, including his family living in jail and his living away from them with a friend just crushed Dickens hopes and feelings.

Another chthonic journey that Charles Dickens faced was his working condition and his pay. Dickens worked at a blacking warehouse. The blacking warehouse was in terrible condition. There were rats everywhere, decaying floors and extremely small rooms. From this job he only earned six pints a week, which is very little to live on. With getting so little money he could barely buy the things that were necessary to live on. Once he bought things that he needed he had little to no extra money. He couldn t buy any fun things to play with or extra food for a bedtime snack, which meant that at times he had have to go without food or other necessary items. This put a lot of strain on Dickens, which made his life harder, yet it made him persevere.

The sentence “compared these everyday associates with those of my happier childhood; and I felt my early hopes of growing up to be a learned and distinguished man, crushed in my breast” from the essay is an example because it means that Dickens can see his hopes of going to school and being well educated crushed when he is sent to work at a blacking warehouse. This is a chthonic journey because all Dickens really wanted was to get an education and do something with his life. Yet, his parents forced him to work at the blacking warehouse. He earned very little money from this job. He

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bought things that he need but that still left him with no extra money for the weekend of the weekdays.

This concludes my paper on the chthonic journeys of Charles Dickens. The reason I wrote this paper was to tell about the chthonic journeys of Charles Dickens. It explains

how one s life can get tough yet one just has to stick with it and persevere. Despite being separated from his family and working in poor conditions for low pay Dickens persevered and became a famous writer. This paper provides a background on Dickens hero life and his example to preserver during tough times.


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