Hard Times is important as a realistic novel for reflecting and revealing the labor-capital conflict in the middle of nineteenth century by Charles Dickens. As a giant in literature, Dickens is good at symbolism, which means he places extra indications on images used.
The thesis analyzes images and their symbolic meanings in the novel. There are mainly two kinds of images, namely static ones and dynamic ones. The static ones include factory and room, an the dynamic ones include serpents of smoke and fire. There is a perfect connection between these two, because serpents of smoke is the product of factory, and similarly, fire the product of room. And all images symbolize the miserable lives of characters.
Keyword: image; symbolic meaning; misery; Charles Dickens
Chapter 1 Introduction
1.1 Charles Dickens and Hard Times
1.2 Literature Review
1.3 The Structure of the Paper
Chapter 2 Images and Their Symbolic Meanings in Hard Times
2.1 Static Images
2.1.1 Factory: Grave for Stephen Blackpool
(i) Classroom: Grave for Pupil
(ii) Mrs. Gradgrind’s Room
2.2 Dynamic Images
2.2.1 Serpents of Smoke
Chapter 3 Conclusion