Times can and will change, people can and will change, and in Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, Ebenezer Scrooge could and did change. In the beginning of the tale, we see him as a cruel, miserly and insensitive old man and after he has his dreams, he is no longer that, but a caring, sympathetic and generous man instead. .
In the first stave of the story, Scrooge's character was revealed as unkind, uncharitable and overall cruel. He refuses to heat his own office, much less that of his impoverished yet hard working clerk and even goes so far as to try and deny him a Christmas break, stating that his clerk was trying to rob him of the wages he would dole out for the day of vacation. This shows us that he is miserly and cruel, typically what we would call cheap. When the association of men comes looking for donations to help the unfortunate, he not only says no, he goes so far as to say they should decrease the excess population and do it quickly. He feels no qualms or inner guilt for saying such a heartless thing, but feels triumphant and pleased. When his beloved sister's child invites him to his family's Christmas dinner, he rejected the offer in a less than gracious fashion, ignoring his nephew's earnest pleads and overtures of friendship and love.[p.4] Scrooge shows no compassion or caring in any of the scenarios stated. He cares not for those surrounding him or those who try to be good to him, but cares only for his financial well being.
We begin to see the transformation in Stave Two when the first ghost, the Ghost of Christmas Past, takes Scrooge back to his boyhood school. The ghost shows him the Christmas where his sister Fan came to bring him home. It is the first time that we see any positive emotion in Scrooge and he begins to babble about all of the good memories from that time in his life. The Ghost of Christmas Past also takes him to his first employer's building.