Hard Times

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Hard Times  (1854) 
by Charles Dickens
Hard Times is a novel by Charles Dickens, published in 1854. It is significant for being the shortest of his full novels. The book is one of a number of state-of-the-nation novels published around the same time, another being North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell, which aimed to highlight the social and economic pressures some people were under. The novel is unusual, in that it is not set in London, as is Dickens' usual wont, but the fictitious Victorian industrial town of Coketown. It has met mixed critical response from a diverse range of critics, such F. R. Leavis, George Bernard Shaw, and Thomas Macaulay. This was usual for Dickens' treatment of trade unions, and the pessimism about the division between capitalistic millowners and the undervalued workers, after the Industrial Revolution, set in the Victorian era of Britain.Excerpted from Hard Times on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Table of Contents


Book the First: Sowing
I.  The One Thing Needful
II.  Murdering the Innocents
III.  A Loophole
IV.  Mr. Bounderby
V.  The Keynote
VI.  Sleary's Horsemanship
VII.  Mrs. Sparsit
VIII.  Never Wonder
IX.  Sissy's Progress
X.  Stephen Blackpool
XI.  No Way Out
XII.  The Old Woman
XIII.  Rachael
XIV.  The Great Manufacturer
XV.  Father and Daughter
XVI.  Husband and Wife

Book the Second: Reaping
I.  Effects in the Bank
II.  Mr. James Harthouse
III.  The Whelp
IV.  Men and Brothers
V.  Men and Masters
VI.  Fading Away
VII.  Gunpowder
VIII.  Explosion
IX.  Hearing the Last of It
X.  Mrs. Sparsit's Staircase
XI.  Lower and Lower
XII.  Down

Book the Third: Garnering
I.  Another Thing Needful
II.  Very Ridiculous
III.  Very Decided
IV.  Lost
V.  Found
VI.  The Starlight
VII.  Whelp-Hunting
VIII.  Philosophical
IX.  Final
This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.