A Christmas CarolA Ghost Story the Christmas

Nov. 23 – Dec. 20

By Charles DickensAdapted and also originally command by Michael WilsonDirected by Rachel Alderman

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Hartford Stage

Noble Shropshire together Jacob Marley. Photo by T. Charles Erickson.

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While contemporary audiences most regularly associate ghosts through Halloween, the cold and also dark the winter was an ominous time complete of mystery for the Victorians. The chilling winds and freezing temperatures were exceptionally dangerous for the plenty of impoverished people who lacked suitable clothes and shelter. With cures because that many common illnesses inaccessible or just not however discovered, winter was typically accompanied by death. While initiatives at holiday cheer carried some degree of warmth and also festivity, the gray landscape and also quiet nights conquered the victorian imagination. As soon as he created A Christmas Carol, Dickens capitalized top top this by using ghosts as impactful icons to interact his message and also provoke alters in his characters and also audiences alike. The resulting story is a an effective “ghost story the Christmas,” the original text of i beg your pardon Dickens prefaced in December 1843: “I have endeavored in this Ghostly small book, to raise the Ghost of an Idea, which shall not placed my readers out of humour v themselves, v each other, with the season, or v me. May it haunt their dwellings pleasantly, and also no one wish to place it.”


The chain brought by the ghost that Jacob Marley is among the many conspicuous symbols in the play. “I undertake the chain i forged in life,” Marley tells Scrooge in plot 1, step 3. “I do it link by link, and yard by yard.” as soon as he to be alive, Marley spent his time in the search of wealth quite than doing an excellent for his fellow human beings. His action forged one invisible chain intended to bind his heart to the earth, and also the greedier that became, the longer and also heavier the chain grew. Now dead for 7 years, Marley alerts Scrooge the a comparable fate (and a longer, more heavier chain) awaits the if the does not change his ways. “Is sample strange to you? Or would certainly you understand the weight and also length of the solid coil girlfriend bear yourself? that was as heavy and also as lengthy as this seven Christmas Eves ago. You have actually labored in the since. The is a ponderous chain” (1.3).


The Ghosts that A Christmas Carol. Photograph by T. Charles Erickson.

The Ghost of Christmas previous represents memory. She mirrors Scrooge occasions from his previous in hopes of shedding light on exactly how Scrooge ended up being bitter and miserly and to repeat him that he to be not always that way. If the Ghost can help Scrooge remember that he once was, there may still be hope for him.

The Ghost of Christmas existing represents sacrament and great will. He mirrors Scrooge scenes of people sharing what they have actually with each other, even if they have an extremely little. This Ghost looks for to show Scrooge the the true an interpretation of the vacation is uncovered in the delight that originates from giving come others and celebrating together. If Scrooge is to readjust his life, over there is no far better time to start than Christmas.

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The Ghost of Christmas Future represents are afraid of death. This Ghost intends to show Scrooge the if he proceeds in his current fashion, there is a reckoning that awaits him. In death, Jacob Marley paid because that his plot on Earth. If he does no change, Scrooge will suffer the exact same fate. The affection the Cratchits hold for one another in the wake of tiny Tim’s death stands in stark comparison to the predictions for Scrooge’s future, and pushes Scrooge to do a choice.