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Hard Times Illustration

Hard Times

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Hard Times, by Charles Dickens, was published in complete form in 1854 and was Dickens' tenth novel. The book is intended to reflect social and economic challenges facing 19th century English society. The story follows the family and acquaintances of Thomas Gradgrind, who espouses fact over fancy, and had established the educational system in fictitious Coketown. Sissy, whose father is involved in the circus, is sent to the Gradgrind school to pursue a "better life." The consequences of choices are clearly seen as the character's lives unfold and they reap what they sow.

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Readability Method Rating
Fry Estimate
Flesh Reading Ease
Composite Grade Level
Open LORE Reading Level
73 (fairly easy)