A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)  York Notes GCSE Revision Guide

GCSE Study Notes and Revision Guides

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1) York Notes

Charles Dickens

Revise the key points

Read through the key points, then print the cards as a handy revision aid.

1 The five chapters

The novella is structured in five sections called ‘staves’, an old word for verses of folk songs, to link with the ‘Carol’ of its title.

Language, form and structure

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)

2 Literary genre

Traditional ghost story conventions include a sequence of three apparitions and mysterious shifts in time and place.

Language, form and structure

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)

3 A story to read aloud

The first-person narrative conveys a strong, sometimes ironic, authorial voice with a sense of direct, personal address from Dickens to his reader.

Language, form and structure

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)

4 Repetitive sentence structures

Patterned sentences emphasise important details or create humorous effects and rhythm when read aloud, e.g. the anaphora of starting several phrases with ‘No’ (Stave One, p. 3) stresses Scrooge’s isolation.

Language, form and structure

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)

5 Description

Dickens creates rich descriptive effects with adjectives, e.g. he gives many types of food sensual appeal – ‘juicy oranges, luscious pears’ (Stave Three, p. 42).

Language, form and structure

A Christmas Carol (Grades 9–1)

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