Book 1, Chapter 5 Summary

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Last Updated January 12, 2023.

Coketown is an industrial city filled with red brick buildings, tall chimneys, machinery, and coils of smoke. Its streets and many of its people are nearly exactly alike, and the whole town’s focus is on facts and more facts, figures and markets, money and purchases. There are eighteen different denominations of churches in the town, but the working people belong to none of them, and those who do belong complain constantly of the low morals of the working class, who are the only ones who indulge themselves in a bit of fancy now and then to break up the monotony and are thus accused of being unmanageable.

Mr. Gradgrind and Mr. Bounderby make their way to Pod’s End, where Signor Jupe is staying, and meet a terrified Sissy along the way. Bitzer has been tormenting her. The men send him on his way and then accompany Sissy to the public house where she has been staying with her father.

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