David Copperfield is a young boy`s passion to growup to be a respectable, learned, useful member of the society. His hardwork, courage, honesty and sensibility take him to heights despite harsh opposing circumstances.
David is portrayed as the only child born after his fathers death and becomes victim of bad fortune from the beginning however his real sufferings starts when her mother re-marries.
The scenes of David boyhood are among the best imagined in the novel. They are woven in such a way by Charles dickens that it seems novel is written by a child. David describes his childhood in these words:
I am glad to recollect that when carrier began to move, my mother ran out at the gate and called to him to stop, that she might kiss me once more. I am glad to dwell upon the earnestness and love with which she lifted up her face to mine, and did so.
But soon this happy picture of Davids childhood is spoiled by his step father. Mr. Murdstone accompanied by his sister with his heartless cruelty. In one of the scenes Mr. Murdstone beats him as a result he bites his finger off. But rebellion does not seem a successful idea for David. He pays for it and sends to Salem house where he has experienced another kind of tyranny.
In many modern readers point of view his step father is not solely responsible for his sufferings but his mother too. She is just a silent spectator on David miseries. She never comes forward to help him out. Perhaps Dickens shows us a view of Victorian society when women are suppressed and wholly dependent on men. Neither at the same time Dickens allowed his hero complains about his mother nor does has he admired her.
The bond between children and parents seems a primarily concern of the novelist. David is deprived of attention when it is really needed. When he learns of his mother death at Salem house he is over come with grief yet at the same time he enjoys the attention he receives from his school fellows I felt distinguished. Hence we see that Dickens is completely successful in beginning or throughout to show us David bad fortune. After his mothers death David is sent to warehouse as expected. In this situation Charles Dickens and story of David Copperfield seem most alike as Dickens himself has experience of working in a blacking factory. It seems the David just let people have there own way he is submissive as a child. This submission can be expected from a child but it is astonishing for readers to see 10 years old boy dealing all oppositions bravely. In these upsets situations Dickens showed us that David does not develop negative quality in him which is normal and his brutal childhood never dominates his personality wrongly. In later life also he doesnt seem to have grudges for those who actually spoiled his life. Rather Dickens hero never thinks of doing any harm with anyone. As ten years old boy his choices are remarkable. He doesnt only remember his aunt Betsy but also decides to go to her and seek help. Dickens shows us that life can get you down but you always have alternatives. This also creates a lot of suspense on readers side to see what is going to happen with David now.
David Copperfield of Blunderstone is reborn at his aunts as Copperfield Trotwood. The barbarous schooling of Mr. Creakle is replaced by the kind instructions of Mr.Wickfield and Dr.strong, the callous neglect of his step father is replaced by solicitude of his aunt. With a passage of time he developed a great bunch of relationships with different people in the novel. Aunt Betsy is more like a father than a mother for David. Aunt Betsy is not presented a typical Victorian woman but an independent one. In such harsh circumstances David really needs a person like his aunt under whom he can survive and Dickens has provided him.
In the novel Copperfield has got two emotional attachments, James Steerforth and Dora Spenlow. Steerforth once calls David young innocence. It is true in the sense that he is unable to see through Steerforth character. Even Agnes once warns David about him. Even after Steerforth elopement with Emily he cannot quite think badly of him. In fact his whole marriage to Dora is a result of the first mistaken impulse of an undisciplined heart. He falls in love with Dora at first sight. He doesnt remember his previous infatuations like Miss. Shepherd, Miss.Larkins, and even little Emily. He goes ahead and marries Dora. Dickens is almost silent on Davids making choice for Dora. Is he only simply infatuated or is it true love? Dickens has never presented the idea of fullness in Davids life with Dora. Instead he is always occupied with the thoughts of house keeping and care of child wife Dora. She lacks the maturity required to share actively in Davids life. After Dora dies David is seen relieved instead of aggrieved. We can say that Doras death releases Copperfield of his conjugal obligations.
His second marriage is quite confusing for the readers she is always like a sister for him. Perhaps David fails to notice that Agnes loves him but throughout the novel we have never seen any emotional attachment on Davids part. His happiness is only achieved when he remarries Agnes.Infact Dickens seems to prove that ultimate happiness can be achieved with the marriage of two minds.
Copperfield establishes himself first as a legal clerk and a parliamentary reporter and later as a novelist. All of the things that David learns about human nature during the novel, with Mr. Murdstone and Mr. Creakle abuse, with Steer forths betrayal, with Uriah Heeps manipulation give him the added maturity he needs to succeed in the world; still these painful experiences have come at cost.