Tale of Two Cities – English Assignment Recalled to life is one of the major themes in the novel Tale of Two Cities. It comes into relation with other themes such as love, redemption and good versus evil. Charles Dicken’s uses this theme to show that everyone deserves a second chance. This is portrayed very heavily in the characters of Dr Manette, Charles Darnay and Sydney Carton. Recalled to life can also be used to represent rebirth of both the mind and life itself.
It proves to be very effective in changing the physical and mental health of someone’s life.
It affects the way they react to the things around them and give us, the reader, a picture of how the characters are witnessed by the people around them. It later becomes obvious that this kind of recalling has to be wanted and worked towards. This is evident in Sydney Carton because he continued to rely on others to bring him out of his worthlessness.
Sydney is a prime example of becoming recalled to life, going from a state of hopelessness to worthiness. He is a very smart man and has good will but does not see any hope for himself. He seeks for others for help him and cannot see any way to prove that he is of any worth.
When reveals he has feelings for Miss Lucie Manette she replies” … can I not save you, Mr Carton? Can I not recall you—forgive me again! —to a better course? Can I in no way repay your confidence? ” Lucie’s reply helps to prove that she sees a better future for Carton’s life and he needs only to try. Nevertheless it is not until the final climax of the book that Carton reaches a sense of being recalled to life, where he feels he has done all he can do in order to help Lucie. He wishes to save the people he loves and put everything behind him to save Lucie from being widowed and Darnay from his certain death.
He chooses to sacrifice himself feeling he hasn’t really done anything of worth in his life and accepts death because of the love he had for them. Underneath all the bad things he had done in his life, Sydney was a good and courageous man. Dr Manette reaches a similar conclusion. After 18 years in the Bastille, because of the Marquis Evremonde, Dr Manette is reunited with his daughter. Having spent many years shoemaking and stuck thinking his name “105 North Tower” he is brought back to England by Mr Lorry and Miss Lucie Manette.
Through many years of tireless work, Miss Lucie helps her father put his old prison habits behind him. Although it is not until the fateful day when they are forced to go back to France, do we see Dr Manette in a new way. Filled with the determination to bring his daughter back together with her husband, he is driven to be stronger. Recalled to life, Dr Manette is a survivor of the bastille and is immediately respected by the revolutionists. With his new found strength Dr Manette works to free Charles Darnay who is now captured inside La Force prison and sentenced to death.
Starting from early in the book, Charles Darnay is almost hung, drawn and quatered for treason. He is vouched upon by Lucie and Carton, recalled from this terrible fate. Darnay soon after, tries to set himself anew by finding an honest job. However, when Darnay visits his uncle he rejects this inheritance and tries to live a clean life in England. For a few years later Darnay proposes to Lucie . He is safe from any danger until it is known that he is an aristocrat and is the nephew of the Marquis who put Dr Manette into the Bastille. He is added to the list of names whose heads will be sentenced to the one and only guillotine.
Yet by the help of Dr Manette and the sacrifices of Sydney Carton, he is recalled to life from his close encounters with death. There are many places in the book that represent recalled to life. Not in a physical but a spiritual and maybe even mental way. Changes in characters like Dr Manette are shown all throughout the passage. Sydney carton, on the other hand, made a sacrificed his life for his loved ones and finally felt a sense of worthiness. A sign of recalled to life proves the courage and determination that went towards his death.
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