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    Penguin Classics: A Tale of Two Cities


    Date Released

    Out of Print

    Superficially it appears the least Dickensian of all his novels. However, George Woodcock points out that, written at a point of crisis in Dickens' life, it was closely linked with past and present matters of deep personal importance to him. As such, this novel becomes the embodiment of Dickens' own passions, fears and forebodings: the revolution which engulfs the characters symbolizes his own psychological revolution, both as man and artist. The three main characters, Charles Darnay, Sydney Carton and Lucie Manette, become projections of Dickens' himself. And the title, which contains the whole sweep of the author's vision, suggests the basic dichotomy on which the novel rests: the choice between changing society and changing oneself; the gulf between revolutionary ideals and methods; and the duality in the human heart externalized by the Darnay-Carton relationship.

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