Don't Know Dickens

Charles Dickens, that is.

OMF: What’s in a Name?

I have been thinking about the title of Our Mutual Friend quite a bit and why Dickens picked the title. Yes, maybe such wondering should wait until the end of the novel, but I wanted to blog about it before I forgot about it.

Option #1: Friends Emerge

This is the first section of reading that seems to be more about friends than enemies. From the beginning, people set up others–or maybe kill others. Characters have a public facade, but readers see their questionable or downright greedy motives when others aren’t looking. I haven’t been able to relax with this book because I’m constantly trying to figure things out.

In this section, though, I was much relieved to see acts of kindness (with no obvious self-serving reason behind such generosity). I hope that there will be more of a balance by the end of the novel.

Option #2

There is no such thing as a friend. If the Veneerings, Boffins, Lammles, and everyone associated with them are really friends, then I’m not sure if their idea of a friend is the same as mine. Or am I naive about people and their motivations?

Why are they so quick to form friendships? I guess this goes back to the dinner with the Veneerings and the marriage of the Lammles. People form such quick attachments to those who will help them get higher up on the social ladder without asking some serious questions: why would I want to know such shallow people? Who are they really? Why should I respect them?



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