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Dickens and Victorian Times - a webquest
Oliver Twist - the film
Oliver Twist - the book

Charles DICKENS
Rescol


 

 

 

OLIVER TWIST :

WHAT LIFE WAS LIKE FOR POOR CHILDREN

http://www.michellehenry.fr/OT.htm

( Pour imprimer sur 2 pages, cliquer ici. )


A. Charles DICKENS

I. His life

  1. When was he born ? ........................
  2. Why didn't he go to school at the age of ten ? .................
  3. What happened to his father in 1824 ? and why ? ..............
  4. Where did Dickens work then ? ...................
  5. Was that period important in his life ? ....................
  6. Where did he go to live with his wife ? ..................
  7. How many children did he have ? ...................
  8. Did he always stay in England ? ......................
  9. When did he die ? and how old was he ? .................
  10. Where is he buried ? ........................

II. His works - Find the corresponding titles in English :

1. Les Aventures de Mr Pickwick : .........................................................................
2. Conte de Noël : ..................................................................................................
3. Le Carillon : ........................................................................................................
4. Le Grillon du Foyer : ...........................................................................................
5. Les Temps Difficiles : ..........................................................................................
6. Les Grandes Espérances : ...................................................................................
7. Notre Ami Commun : ..........................................................................................

B. Before seeing the film : who’s who in Oliver Twist

Characters
Find the right letter
Descriptions
Oliver Twist   a) The cleverest of Fagin’s young pickpockets. He talks and dresses like a grown man.
Fagin   b) A brutal professional burglar brought up in Fagin’s gang
Nancy   c) An orphan born in a workhouse
Mr Brownlow   d) One of Fagin’s pickpockets
Bill Sikes   e) A criminal who trains homeless children to pick pockets
Mr Bumble   f) Mr Sowerberry’s mean wife
The Artful Dodger   g) A well-off gentleman who is Oliver’s first benefactor
Charley Bates   h) One of Fagin and Sikes’associates, crass and not too bright
Toby Crackit   i) Mr Brownlow’s kindhearted housekeeper
Mrs Bedwin   j) The undertaker to whom Oliver is apprenticed
Noah Claypole   k) A pompous beadle who symbolizes self-righteousness, greed, hypocrisy and folly
Mr Sowerberry   l) A charity boy who bullies and mistreats Oliver
Mrs Sowerberry   m) A young prostitute and Bill Sikes’lover

C. A closer look at the poor’s life in the XIX century

1. The dark side of the Industrial Revolution

Use the following words to complete the text:

better paid work factories smallpox
cheaply factory owners the countryside
cholera mills the towns
crammed quickly toilets
crowded rubbish unhealthy
diseases slum water
 

During that period, there was a massive increase in the number of ……………….and ………..
As a consequence, many people from ………………………………..began to move into ……..
………….. looking for ……………………………………….
The …………………………………………..built houses for these people.

A typical worker’s house :
- It was built really ……………………… and ………………………………
- There was no running ………………….or ………………………
- It was ……………………….with 5 or more possibly …………………….into a single room.
- The household …………………….was thrown out into the streets.
In general, these houses, like the new towns, were dirty and ……………………… They were perfect breeding grounds for ……………………like …………………….., typhus, …………….. and dysentery.
A poor and dirty neighbourhood like this is called a ………………..

2. Child labour

Use the following words to complete the text:

4 or 5 doors lungs stole
backs draughty match sweep
breathing elbows orphans teeth
bruises from picked textile mills
carry knees ragged thighs
children lonely roamed treated badly
coal long hours scarers until
damp      

Many factory workers were ……………………. They worked …………………………and were often ……………………………………..by the supervisors or overseers. Some of them were as young as …………………………………..
Where they worked :
- In …………mines, they had to open ……………………for the wagons to pass. It was the easiest job, but it was very …………………..and the place was usually ……………and ……….. They could also …………………..loads of coal on their ………………
- In …………………………………, they spent long working hours at the machines which caused some serious accidents.
- In ………………..factories, phosphorous caused their ……………..to rot and some died from the effect of ……………………….it into their ………………..
- They had to ………………chimneys in large houses and suffered many cuts, grazes and ………………….on their ……………., …………………..and ………………because the passages of chimneys were very narrow.
- In the fields, the little bird ………………..could work ……………4 in the morning ……… 7 at night.
- In the streets, hordes of dirty, …………………..children …………………….the streets with no money and no home. They were often ……………………. They ………………or …..... pockets to buy food.

3. Oliver was born in a “workhouse”. What was that ?

Who went to live in a workhouse ?

     
     

What was it like in the workhouse ?

The buildings looked like …………………..
Women were kept …………………….from the men, including their …………………….
Children were kept ……………………..from adults – even from their own …………………..
The inmates had ………………..work to do (ie hard, tiring work) from early in the morning till late in the evening.
The meals were taken in silence, and no ………………….was provided – inmates had to use their ……………………. These meals were dull, tasteless and so …………………that they were described as “a ………………………………………………” (people were always hungry : see the famous episode in OliverTwist, I want some more).

(Updated on 11/01/2017)