A Christmas Carol Essay: Character Analysis

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From the play “A Christmas Carol,” by Charles Dickens, the character Tiny Tim is known for the statement “God bless us every one” (2.3.782). Even though this young boy is destitute, he still manages to keep a smile on his face. Like Tiny Tim, Ebenezer Scrooge, the protagonist, had a rough and lonely childhood. Because of this similarity, it is not a shock that Tiny Tim contributes to Scrooge’s transformation. Not only this but Scrooge’s knowledge about how his actions will determine whether Tiny Tim will live or not also plays an important role in his transformation.

Both Ebenezer Scrooge and Tiny Tim had a harsh childhood. When the Ghost of Christmas Past first takes Scrooge back to his childhood, Scrooge is reminded of the lonely childhood he lived. During the holidays, while everyone else got to go home to their families, Scrooge was left alone at his boarding school. This event prepares him to be compassionate with children, especially Tiny Tim. He discovers that Tiny Tim has a sickness, Tiny Tim has a rough childhood. Because of this similarity, Scrooge feels empathy towards Tiny Tim which allows Scrooge to better understand why he should pay his employee, Bob Cratchit, more money. Tiny Tim’s existing situation plays an important role in Scrooge’s transformation, but so does his future situation.

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Scrooge’s knowledge about how his actions will decide whether Tiny Tim will live or not also plays an important role in his transformation. As previously mentioned, the Ghost of Christmas Present displayed the Cratchit family to Scrooge. Tiny Tim then says his well-known statement “God bless us everyone” (2.3.782). Touched by this statement, Scrooge asks if Tiny Tim will live. The ghost says he sees a vacant seat in the poor chimney corner and a crutch without an owner. The ghost continues to say that if these shadows remain unaltered by the future, the child will die. Scrooge then starts to realize that if he continues to treat people coldly and not have the Christmas spirit, then Tiny Tim will die. But, if he starts being kind and compassionate, then Tiny Tim will live. Nobody could live with knowing that they were the cause of a child’s death, not even Ebenezer Scrooge.

Some people may disagree and say that Tiny Tim does not play an important role in the transformation of Scrooge. Tiny Tim was hardly mentioned and some individuals may question how someone that was barely mentioned has a big impact on the transformation of the main character. Although this is a fair argument, Tiny Tim is a very symbolic character of Scrooge’s transformation. Towards the middle of the play, Tiny Tim says “God bless us everyone” (2.3.782). This phrase is then repeated at the end of the play, symbolic of Scrooge’s change of heart.

Tiny Tim plays an important role in the transformation of Scrooge not only because they both had a rough childhood but because Scrooge understands how his actions will decide whether Tiny Tim will live or not. Even though Tiny Tim’s family does not have much money, he still manages to stay happy, which is what touches Scrooge’s heart. The real question is would Scrooge have changed if Tiny Tim was not involved? 

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