Oliver Twist, or the Parish Boy's Progress is the second novel of Charles Dickens. It was published from 1837 to 1839 as a series. Born in a workhouse, the orphan Oliver Twist is sold into apprenticeship with an undertaker. After escaping, Oliver travels to London, where he meets the Artful Dodger, a member of a gang of juvenile pickpockets led by the elderly criminal Fagin.
Oliver Twist unromantically portrays the sordid lives of criminals, and exposes the cruel treatment of the many orphans in London in the mid-19th century. In an early example of the social novel, Dickens satirizes child labour, domestic violence, the recruitment of children as criminals, and the presence of street children. The novel may have been inspired by the story of Robert Blincoe, an orphan whose account of working as a child labourer in a cotton mill was widely read in the 1830s. It is likely that Dickens's own experiences as a youth contributed as well.
This edition contains original text from the one volume book printed in 1939. It features illustrations from George Cruikshank.
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