Critical Analysis Essays On Pride And Prejudice Characters

Critical Analysis Of Pride And Prejudice

Mr. Darcy's prejudice is strongly rooted in him, but Elizabeth is able to break down some of his distaste for her, which eventually causes him to fall in love with her. Mr. Darcy, towards those he considers of lower status and regard, he is an aloof, condescending man. He holds the stupidity and silly behavior of the Bennet family with great contempt, all except for Elizabeth and Jane. Jane gains his respect, because she is a proper, civil lady, but Elizabeth has a greater affect on his prejudice. She is not afraid of Mr. Darcy and demonstrates her equal intelligence through her wit battles with Mr. Darcy. He enjoys these qualities and grows feelings for her. When he then proposes to her she rejects him. This causes him to rethink his prejudices. He is forced to look at himself as the pompous, conceited man he has acted and correct his behavior. He is willing to disregard his disgust of the Bennets for Elizabeth's sake. He pays for debt caused by Wickham on the Bennet family, in order to please Elizabeth. Mr. Darcy's prejudice of others changes due to his affection for Elizabeth.

Elizabeth's prejudice has its own evolution. After Elizabeth's pride is damaged by the insults of Mr. Darcy in their first meetings, she has a continued detestation for Mr. Darcy. She refuses to accept any compliment attributed to Mr. Darcy as true to his character. She is very adamant in her determination to dislike him. Mr. Wickham is able to dupe Elizabeth and convince her even more of the bad nature of Mr. Darcy just because of this. Elizabeth also has a rude awakening of her prejudice towards Mr. Darcy. In the letter he writes to her explaining the accusations she made of him, she is corrected in her facts about him. She finds him to be a respectable, generous man who only acted for the good of his friend. Every moment she is with him from then after her opinion of him changes. She sees the true Darcy and starts to admire him and then falls in love with him. Her prejudice undergoes a change from contempt to love.

Mr. Collins is vain, pompous, stupid man who is oblivious to his ridiculous behavior. He enjoys displaying and boasting of his wonderful life. He likes to be indulged by the...

Loading: Checking Spelling

0%

Read more

Pride and Prejudice Book Analysis

3212 words - 13 pages In Jane Austen’s England, British heritage, it was said that “we certainly know the world of the English late 18th century and the Regency beginning the 1800s was very different from our own. Her novels of love and social manners in the Regency gentry are loved because of her brilliant use of language and her savvy insight into human motivation and relationships.” (1) The book, “Pride and Prejudice,” by Jane Austen takes place in England around...

Analysis of Chapter 11 of "Pride and Prejudice"

1078 words - 4 pages Chapter 11 of "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen opens with two lines from the third person, or omniscient narrator, who is focalizing through Elizabeth Bennett. Focalizing, meaning that it is the narrator's voice that speaks, but we see through the eyes of the characters, gives us the chance to understand the characters without direct dialogue. By telling us that Elizabeth was 'growing more angry but trying to compose herself' (Pride and...

Analysis of the Opening Chapter of Pride and Prejudice

2674 words - 11 pages Analysis of the Opening Chapter of Pride and Prejudice The opening sentence of ‘Pride and Prejudice’ tells is the main theme of the entire novel, marriage. ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.’ The novel is based upon the theme of marriage, finding a potential husband who has ‘sufficient funds’. Jane, Elizabeth, Lydia, Kitty and ...

context of pride and prejudice

654 words - 3 pages (a little literary and historical context)Jane Austen was born in 1755 in Steventon, England, where she lived until she became twenty five years old. George Austen, Jane's father and the rector of the local parish, taught her largely at home. Jane began to write while in her teens and completed First Impressions , the actual Pride and prejudice (1796-1797). The...

The roles of pride and prejudice in Pride and Prejudice

1413 words - 6 pages Becoming an immediate success in the contemporary novel public in early nineteenth century, Pride and Prejudice has proved to be the most popular of Jane Austen's novels and remains a classic masterpiece two centuries later. The title itself describes the underlying theme of the book. Pride and prejudice, intimately related in the novel, serve as challenges to the cherished love story of Darcy and Elizabeth. It is interesting to see how these...

Scene Analysis in Pride and Prejudice

1263 words - 5 pages This passage occurs shortly after Elizabeth has received a letter from mr.darcy. The reason for the writing of the letter comes from the fact that Elizabeth had accused Darcy of two main issues. The first accusation against darcy was that he was a dishonorable man because he cheated Mr.Wickham out of land. Following this accusation, Elizabeth also believed that bingley's dismissal of jane was his doing. Both of these issues caused her...

Pride & Prejudice Analysis

1254 words - 5 pages Pride & PrejudiceIn Pride & Prejudice, audiences are presented to the character, Elizabeth Bennet, who is a quick-witted, bold and intelligent woman. She is a dynamic character who goes through a transformation in her outlooks and insights by the end of the film, but always holds true to her values. Although the character of...

'Ride Frank and Anna: An analysis of Pride and Prejudice, Frankenstein and Anna Karenina

1360 words - 5 pages In society, citizens are expected to confirm to certain ideals; a set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that constitutes their way of viewing reality. The nineteenth century was a pivotal period in European history that included key changes in social classes, the 'Industrial Revolution', extensive urbanization and both religious enlightenment and rebellion. The protagonists in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Mary Shelly's...

Importance of Manners in Pride and Prejudice

937 words - 4 pages Importance of Manners in Pride and Prejudice Manners have survived throughout the many passing years of history and culture to influence the ways human beings interact even today in the way we relate to one another: what is acceptable and unacceptable social behavior. Proper manners in everything from conversation to eating have long been distinguishing mark of social status. Even now they are often important in business and...

Exploring the Theme of Pride and Prejudice

2400 words - 10 pages How does Jane Austen explore the theme of Pride and Prejudice in the novel? The original title of Jane Austen's novel, "Pride and Prejudice" was "First impressions". From this title it is clear that Jane Austen wanted to convey to the reader the importance of first impressions and how we form them so quickly. Other themes of the novel include pride, prejudice, conceit and vanity. Most people have these feelings or opinions without even...

Comparison of Literature and Film: Pride & Prejudice

956 words - 4 pages Pride & Prejudice is one of those cases where I liked both the book and the film, considering them both beautifully written and edited, but prefer the book due to all of the details and dialogue, much of which had to be manipulated of cut in the film, for various reasons. In my opinion, this book would be a dream to make into a big budget film because there is so much material to work with, thus giving a high degree artistic license to the...

As Mary says in Chapter 5, "human nature is particularly prone to [pride]." Throughout Pride and Prejudice, pride prevents the characters from seeing the truth of a situation. Most notably, it is one of the two primary barriers in the way of a union between Elizabeth and Darcy. Darcy's pride in his social position leads him to scorn anyone outside of his own social circle. Meanwhile, Elizabeth's pride in her powers of discernment cloud her judgment. These two find happiness by helping each other overcome his/her pride. Outside of Elizabeth and Darcy, however, Austen seems pessimistic about the human ability to conquer this character flaw. A slew of secondary characters, like Mrs. Bennet, Lady Catherine, Mr. Collins, and Caroline Bingley, remain deluded by personal pride throughout the novel.

Critic A. Walton Litz comments, "in Pride and Prejudice one cannot equate Darcy with Pride, or Elizabeth with Prejudice; Darcy's pride of place is founded on social prejudice, while Elizabeth's initial prejudice against him is rooted in pride of her own quick perceptions." Ultimately, both characters' egos drive them towards personal prejudice. Darcy has been taught to scorn anyone outside his own social circle and must overcome his prejudice in order to endear himself to Elizabeth. Similarly, Elizabeth's excessive pride in her discernment leads her write Darcy off too quickly. Ultimately, they find happiness by recognizing the barriers that prejudice creates.

Austen portrays the family unit as primarily responsible for the intellectual and moral education of children. Throughout the novel, the younger characters either benefit from or suffer from their family values. Mr. and Mrs. Bennet's failure to provide their daughters with a proper education leads to Lydia's utter foolishness and immorality. Elizabeth and Jane manage to develop virtue and discernment in spite of their parents' negligence, though it is notable that they have other role models (like the Gardiners). Darcy shares his father's aristocratic nature and tendency towards generosity, while Lady Catherine's formidable parenting style has rendered her daughter too frightened to speak.

Austen is certainly critical of the gender injustices present in 19th century English society, particularly as perpetrated by the institution of marriage. In Pride and Prejudice, many women (such as Charlotte) must marry solely for the sake of financial security. However, in her portrayal of Elizabeth, Austen shows that women are just as intelligent and capable as their male counterparts. Jane Austen herself went against convention by remaining single and earning a living through her novels. In her personal letters, Austen advised friends only to marry for love. In the novel, Elizabeth's happy ending reveals Austen's beliefs that woman has the right to remain independent until she meets the right man (if she meets him).

On the other hand, most contemporary readers will find the Longbourn entailment to be unjust. And yet the heroines - Jane and Elizabeth - refrain from speaking out against it. Instead, the only two characters who openly criticize the entailment - Mrs. Bennet and Lady Catherine - are ridiculous caricatures. Furthermore, the fact that Elizabeth seems to share her father's distrust frivolous women suggests Austen's uneasy relationship with her own gender.

Class issues are everywhere in Pride and Prejudice. While the novel never posits an egalitarian ideology nor supports the leveling of all social classes, it does criticize an over-emphasis on class, especially in terms of judging a person's character. Ultimately, the novel accepts Elizabeth's view that the trappings of wealth are not a virtue in and of themselves. Darcy's initial pride is based on his extreme class-consciousness, but he eventually comes to accept Elizabeth's perspective, most notably evidenced through his admiration of the Gardiners. Likewise, he joins Elizabeth in rejecting the upper-class characters who are idle, mean-spirited, closed-minded, like Lady Catherine and Bingley's sisters.

Austen clearly finds rigid class boundaries to be occasionally absurd. Mr. Collins's comic formality and obsequious relationship with Lady Catherine form a satire of class consciousness and social formalities. In the end, the novel's verdict on class differences is moderate. Austen seems to accept the existence of class hierarchy, but she also criticizes the way it can poison society. Critic Samuel Kliger notes, "If the conclusion of the novel makes it clear that Elizabeth accepts class relationships as valid, it becomes equally clear that Darcy, through Elizabeth's genius for treating all people with respect for their natural dignity, is reminded that institutions are not an end in themselves but are intended to serve the end of human happiness."

In Pride and Prejudice, Austen portrays a world in which society is actively involved in the private lives of individuals. Characters often face questions about their responsibility to the world around them. A prime example is Darcy's guilt for not having publicly shamed Wickham before he was able to elope with Lydia. After all, Lydia's sin threatens to besmirch not only her family, but the community at large. And yet Austen seems quite well aware of how easily public opinion can change, as evidenced by the town's easily shifting opinions on Wickham.

Elizabeth, meanwhile, is proudly independent and individualistic. She possesses the ability to transcend her limitations - the negligence of her parents, the frivolity of Meryton, the pragmatic nature of Charlotte - because she is confident enough to go after what she wants. However, her individualistic nature misleads her as she works through her feelings for Darcy - but thankfully, Mrs. Gardiner is there to guide her towards him. Ultimately, Austen is critical of the power public opinion has on individual action, but she also believes that society has a crucial role in promoting virtue and therefore, engendering individual happiness. According to critic Richard Simpson, Austen portrays a "thorough consciousness that man is a social being, and that apart from society there is not even the individual."

Austen's novels unite Aristotelian and Christian conceptions of virtue. She sees human life as purposeful and believes that human beings must guide their appetites and desires through their use of reason. For instance, Elizabeth almost loses her chance at happiness because her vanity overcomes her pragmatism. Lydia's lack of virtue is linked with her inability to control her passion and desire.

Most of these examples emphasize the importance of self-awareness. Without knowing oneself, it is difficult to develop virtue. Darcy and Elizabeth, two of the only characters who actually change in the novel, can only see past their pride and prejudice with each other's help. In the end, Austen links happiness to virtue and virtue to self-awareness.

0 Thoughts to “Critical Analysis Essays On Pride And Prejudice Characters

Leave a comment

L'indirizzo email non verrà pubblicato. I campi obbligatori sono contrassegnati *