a most unworldly, most unhappy, most unfortunate baby,'

Category: Mind | Type: Discussion | Title: David Copperfield (in Context) | Author: Charles Dickens | Ch: My Aunt Makes Up Her Mind About Me

"[U]nworldly" echoes something Betsey says of Mr. Dick in this chapter, "not a business-like way of speaking...not a worldly way." There is great tension throughout the novel between being unworldly, a "baby," and the price of being factual and practical. The unworldly ones possess innocence and imagination, while the worldly ones possess the unscrupulousness that enables them to exploit the innocent. There is the hope, though, as in Betsey's trust in Mr. Dick's insight and uncanny wisdom, that innocence can not only survive but prevail. Unmotivated by self-interest, innocence possesses an intuitive intelligence that can penetrate the schemes of the worldly. Much in the novel will pivot on this matter.

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