Is Scrooge the True Hero of a Christmas Carol?
A Christmas Carol focuses on the spirit of Christmas. Ebenezer Scrooge is a hero in the story because he allows the reader to understand the value of Christmas. He is a miserable old man that fails to see the value of Christmas. However, through it all he remains the hero of the story(Dickens, 2009). This is because he proves that there is a bit of good in everybody, regardless of how miserable a person will be. In addition, he proves that the spirit of Christmas lives within us all even though it is masked by misery and unhappiness. Therefore, Ebenezer Scrooge is a hero based on his ability to illustrate kindness beyond his unhappy life.
In the First Stave (Marley’s Ghosts and the Three hundred Spirits), Ebenezer Scrooge is reluctant to give Bob a break on Christmas day. The rationale behind his reasoning is the value of ensuring that the business keeps operating during the holidays. “What good is Christmas that it should shut down bus-iness”(Dickens, 2009). However, even with the thought of losing business on the day, Scrooge allows Bob the day off on Christmas. He chooses to do his part and at the expense of his happiness (of making money and not working too much). It illustrates that Scrooge is willing to make sacrifices even though he remains a miserable man.
Though Scrooge is not willing to embrace the spirit of Christmas in the same vein as Fred and Bob, he is a symbol of practicality(Dickens, 2009). There is no doubting that Ebenezer Scrooge is a sad man and lacks any sense of compassion; however, he has business sense. For example, his refusal to purchase or add an additional lump of coal to add extra heat to the office ensures that Bob is not complacent in his manner of working because of the heat. Extra warmth would reduce concentration, which is a valid aspect of business. Therefore, the lack of extra heat in the workplace may appear mean or portrays Scrooge as a miser, but the reality is that it is good for productive purposes.
Bob Cratchit and Tiny Tim are heroes in their own right based on the unfortunate aspects that negatively affect their lives(Dickens, 2009). Bob is a kind-hearted man who seeks to do the right thing at any opportunity. Inaddition, he is subjected to unfair treatment for Scrooge who is his boss. To a certain degree, Bob is the depiction of an employee in the modern; underpaid, overworked, and making an effort to make ends meet through the problems. He is a hero because he remains positive even though the various problems that occurthrough his life and to his family. He even manages to remain cheerful and optimistic that Scrooge would give him Christmas day off even though he knows that his boss is cruel and a miserable man.
Tiny Tim is Bob’s son who is a cripple. He was crippled at birth and he embodies the aspects of hardship and struggles of life. His is the image of sympathy because his helpless was not his fault and his parents could do nothing to avert the problem. He is a hero because he takes his situation in stride and is willing to make something of his life regardless of his problem. He is a source of inspiration for Bob who works towards providing a better life for his family(Dickens, 2009). Tim is essential for the story because he embodies the ideology that even through the various problems in life, a person can enjoy life, which was the case at Christmas day. Though the premise is to look down on him, Tim illustrates his willingness to rise above his problems, which is a source of motivation for a reader.
Scrooge and Fred illustrate the nature of extremes in the story. While Scrooge is a bitter and miserable person, Fred is an up-beat person who is always willing to enjoy the holidays(Dickens, 2009). He always makes the effort to invite Scrooge for the Christmas, even though Scrooge always rejects his invitations. Fred is Scrooge’s nephew, and is a positive individual always willing to celebrate the festivities to the extreme. He is a hero based on his likeable character. He can inspire joy based on his demeanor and his approach to socializing.
In contrast, Scrooge is a symbol of hope for humanity in that goodness is within us all. Scrooge endures a period of speaking to ghosts to realize that it is important to be kind. Though he rejects the notion of the ghosts, his hallucination serves as a means of awakening the good in him and embraces the aspects of Christmas. This suggests that Scrooge has always had well in him, but he chose to be miserable out of his own accord. Therefore, Scrooge proves that being miserable is a choice and good resides in everyone regarding of the situation (Dickens, 2009). Therefore, the nature of the characters in the story presents how happiness exists. In the case of Scrooge, his aspect of good is introverted and he extenuates the misery in people. However, majority of the other characters exude happiness. This illustrates the various elements of social values and perspectives.
Dickens, C. (2009). A Christmas Carol. London, UK: Cricket House Books.