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hard times

            In the Charles Dickens novel Hard Times, Dickens paints such a colourful picture of his main characters. We are able to classify them into their social classes and we are able to see how the characters relate to one another. From the information provided in the novel, we are able to classify them based on their social standing and class relationships. The characters in the novel range from Josiah Bounderby, the wealthy industrialist, to Mrs. Blackpool, the poor drunken dissolute wife of Stephen Blackpool.
             The first character that we will discuss is Josiah Bounderby. Josiah Bounderby is from Coketown. He can be described as the villain of the novel who is driven by greed and thrives on a distorted view of the world. He is a boastful bully to the other characters in the novel. He is a man who lied to inflate his reputation as rags to riches self-made man. In fact, he never tires of making this boast. Josiah likes to tell a story that he grew up poor. According to him, his life began in a ditch or he had to live the first ten years of his life as a vagabond. However, he came from a hard working class, loving and supportive family. Josiah uses people to establish his reputation and social standing. .
             Josiah is a very wealthy middle-aged industrialist. Bounderby made his wealth from his trade as a banker, a merchant and a manufacturer among other things. He employs a large percentage of the population of Coketown. As a bachelor, he is fortunate enough to have a house- keeper, Mrs. Spasit. Mrs. Spasit is an elderly lady. She is a formerly well to do lady who fell on hard times. She ended up in his employment because the man she married and now deceased husband ran up a debt and left her in a state of poverty.
             Another employee of Josiah Bounderby is Stephen Blackpool. Stephen is an honest, hard-working power-loom weaver in the factory. Stephen has very little as far as intelligence or social graces and he is very simple.

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