What is Scrooge's profession and how does it affect his life?"A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens

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coachingcorner | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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We get the impression in the novel 'A Christmas Carol' by Charles Dickens that Ebeneezer Scrooge may be involved in the 'loan-shark' business. We see ledgers,totting-up, and accounts being kept. Although this is not certain, if it were, then this would sadly tie in with the unfair reputation those of the Jewish faith endured in London in Victorian times. We are reminded of Fagin and earlier,Shakespeare's Shylock. Historically, some of those of the Jewish faith were known to practice 'usury' which was banned in certain areas so 'ghettoes' sprung up in other areas. Many decent people of the Jewish faith were tarred with the same brush and in some places were hated for the practice of charging high interest.It is possible that Dickens had the exploitation of the poor in this manner in mind.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One of the most renowned misers of literature, Scrooge's profession is never clearly stated by Charles Dickens in his story "A Christmas Carol."  Bob Crachitt, the assistant to Scrooge, seems to be an accountant of sorts; therefore, many feel that Ebenezer Scrooge is, perhaps, a money-lender of a banker of sorts, or a property owner.  All that is mentioned of Scrooge's profession is that he is "in business."  And, because money is his main focus, the business is probably one in which money is transferred and interest on this money collected, as in the three professions above.

This obsession with making money colors the perspective of Ebenezer Scrooge to the point that he divorces himself from all emotion and tenderness which are uncertain, and, thus, cannot always be "profitable." Having been made to remain at school during Christmastime by a cold, distant father, Scrooge closes off his feelings to avoid the pain of rejection or hurt.  In fact, his fiancee of his youth tells him, "You fear the world too much."  Of course, Scrooge realizes later--thanks to the assistance of the three spirits--that one must risk the dangers of emotions, or else one will have no meaningful existence and will die alone, powerless, and hopeless.

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