“Murdering the Innocents”: freewheeling digressions on a chapter of Hard Times
The aim of this paper is to compare the Dickensian representation of schools and teachers with today’s actual Italian reality. Starting from the second chapter of Hard Times, “Murdering the Innocents”, the author goes on examining scenes and characters from Nicholas Nickleby, David Copperfield and Our Mutual Friend, to show how the apparently exaggerated, grotesque and paradoxical situations proposed by Dickens are to be found every day in our schools and universities. Reference is made also to Monsieur Lazhar and Detachment, a couple of films set in a school, whose dramatic plots seem to confirm that some problems denounced by the English author in the XIX century are common worldwide and have not been solved yet.
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