Theme Of Pride In Pride And Prejudice

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Jane Austen renamed her novel Pride and Prejudice because of the presence both flaws have in the lives of all of her characters. No doubt, these flaws have a heavier existence in some characters over others, however, not a single character can escape its presence in entirety. As the novel progresses the reader’s opinion of the characters changes as their actions express a positive or negative change in their level of pride or prejudice. By the end of the novel, each character reveals the true degree to which their flaws extend, after many surprising events that show their true personality. For some, pride and prejudice do not show up as flaws, but rather as honorable traits that mean to do no harm. Elizabeth Bennet, Mr. Darcy, Jane Bennet,…show more content…
The first instance in which she expresses pride occurs at the Lucas Lodge ball in which Mr. Darcy called her tolerable in appearance. She held this action against him and later laughed about the comment with her friends and family. This kind of pride gave her a sense of self-worth that allowed her to not take his comment personally. Her pride, however, does not extend so far as to hinder her from seeing the hubris of other characters. Elizabeth especially hurts the pride of Lady Catherine de Bourgh and Mr. Collins, both of whom she put in place with ego deflating comments. Arguably, believing Mr. Wickham demonstrates Elizabeth’s worst flaw because of the prejudice she forms against Mr. Darcy after the rumors spread of his “ill-doings”. She quickly judged Mr. Darcy’s character based on the words of Mr. Wickham, whom she knew for a shorter amount of time. Elizabeth directs almost all of her prejudice towards Mr. Darcy, which eventually leads to her pointed rejection of his…show more content…
Collins and Miss Caroline Bingley fall on the more ridiculous side of the pride and prejudice spectrum. Both of these characters serve as comic relief because of their abhorrent personalities. In many ways they represent the extreme sides of both flaws, Mr. Collins having the most pride of all the characters, and Miss Caroline having the most prejudice. As the novel progresses the reader can clearly see the pride Mr. Collins takes in having Lady Catherine de Bourgh as his patroness. Mr. Collins quickly tells every character he meets about his close relationship with Lady Catherine and the beautiful estate he lives and works so close to. His flaw brings comic relief even more so because of his profession as a clergyman, meaning he should have the least amount of pride out of every character. Caroline Bingley’s prejudice falls on the extreme side as well, clearly making her the most prejudice of all the characters. She criticizes the lower classes, especially the Bennet family. Caroline also always makes a point to humiliate Elizabeth in front of Mr. Darcy in order to make herself look more appealing in his eyes. Her intentions for separating Jane and Mr. Bingley prove far worse than Mr. Darcy’s, only looking out for her reputation rather than her brothers happiness. Both of these characters exhibit the other flaw in a negative way, casting them out as the comical fools, but their purpose in the novel serves to provide an extreme reference to base the other characters off

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