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Oliver TwistBRIEF BIOGRAPHY OF CHARLES DICKENSBorn to an English Navy clerk and a mother of seven otherchildren, Charles Dickens lived a life of some middle-classcomfort until, abruptly, changes in the family's financialsituation forced his family into a poorhouse and him, at age ten,to work for some time at a boot-blacking factory. AlthoughCharles eventually went to school and began a career as a lawclerk, journalist, and writer, he never forgot this period ofeconomic privation and social despair, and he includeddepictions of poverty in many of the fifteen novels and otherstories and pieces of prose he wrote over the course of his life.HISTORICAL CONTEXTThe Victorian Period coincides with a series of political,economic, and social changes in England that are inseparablefrom the nature of the fiction produced. The high-point of theIndustrial Revolution took place, more or less, at the time ofOliver Twist's writing; the production of goods had transitionedfrom "cottage industries" in th...