Compare and contrast the characters of Louisa Gradgrind and Sissy Jupe in Hard Times.

In Hard Times, Louisa Gradgrind and Sissy Jupe in many ways are polar opposites. Louisa represents utilitarianism, materialism, and rationalism. Sissy represent magic, imagination, and kindheartedness. However, buried deep underneath her hard exterior, Louisa longs for the warmth that Sissy's life exhibits.

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Sissy Jupe and Louisa Gradgrind are in many was opposites in this novel, but they do share some commonalities.

Sissy, the daughter of a circus clown, represents the world of imagination and magic that Mr. Gradgrind would like to eradicate. She leads with her heart rather than her head. For example, she frustrates Gradgrind by saying that the underlying principle of science is “to do unto others as I would that they should do unto me.” Likewise, when confronted with the utilitarian notion of the greatest good for the...

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