What is the similarity between the factory workers of Coketown and Mr. Gradgrind's children?

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podunc eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Chapter V, the narrator speculates that there is indeed an "analogy between the case of the Coketown population and the case of the little Gradgrinds." Both groups live in settings that are monotonous, "severely workful," and have no room for "fancy." In both cases, there is an ominous sense that, the harder they work, the more "the craving gr[ows] within for some physical relief." Since human imagination and desire cannot be stifled forever, in places like Coketown and the Gradgrind household, something eventually has to give.