Oliver Twist is an orphan, born into the world of workhouses and poverty. Apprenticed at a young age, he runs away and finds himself with a curious collection of thieves, rogues and murderers. Tragedy and death are constantly at his heels. Oliver struggles with the burden of being a child and of being poor in industrial England.
In this tale, Dickens shows that poverty breeds crime and that the road from the workhouse to Fagin's vicious gang is short and straight.