What do each of the three spirits in A Christmas Carol represent?

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The Ghost of Christmas Past represents what Scrooge used to be. Back in the day, Scrooge was a cheerful soul who used to enjoy the festive season. He was the life and soul of the party, dancing and singing and thoroughly enjoying himself at Mr. Fezziwig's annual staff get-togethers. But eventually, Scrooge became obsessed with making money, and the iron entered his soul. Ever since then, he's hated Christmas with a passion.

And what Scrooge now is—a mean old skinflint who everyone hates—is represented by the Ghost of Christmas Present. He gives old Ebenezer an uncomfortable insight into what people really think about him and what they say about him behind his back. He also shows Scrooge how other people—normal people, that is—celebrate and enjoy the holiday season. Most importantly of all, the Ghost reveals to Scrooge the horrific consequences of his serial stinginess in the form of two half-starved waifs—allegorical figures representing Ignorance and Want.

Finally, the Ghost...

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Last Updated by eNotes Editorial on December 24, 2019