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The central character of A Christmas Carol is Ebenezer Scrooge, a miserly London-based moneylender,  described in the story as "a squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner!"  Kelly writes that Scrooge may have been influenced by Dickens's conflicting feelings for his father, who he both loved and demonised. This psychological conflict may be responsible for the two radically different Scrooges in the tale—one a cold, stingy and greedy semi-recluse, the other a benevolent, sociable man.  Robert Douglas-Fairhurst, the professor of English literature , considers that in the opening part of the book covering young Scrooge's lonely and unhappy childhood, and his aspiration for money to avoid poverty "is something of a self-parody of Dickens's fears about himself"; the post-transformation parts of the book are how Dickens optimistically sees himself.