Marriage, Parenthood, and ‘A Christmas Carol’, by John M. Grondelski

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*Image: The Ghost of Christmas Present by John Leech, 1843 [from the first edition of A Christmas Carol published by Chapman & Hall, London]

By John M. Grondelski, The Catholic Thing, Dec. 20, 2022

John Grondelski (Ph.D., Fordham) is a former associate dean of the School of Theology, Seton Hall University, South Orange, New Jersey. All views herein are exclusively his.

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol is often regarded as just a children’s story or reduced to a lesson in seasonal greed versus generosity.  But Dickens was writing for adults in 1843, and we moderns would be wrong to limit or flatten its various meanings.

The Carol has a lot to say, for example, about marriage, parenthood, and money.  The way the story unfolds tells us more than just what early Victorian England might have thought about those things; it can speak a lot to us today.

People are more important than things.  While that seems obvious as a principle, it isn’t – and not just because of our current Christmas riot of consumption. …