Great Expectations By Charles Dickens Essay

Great Expectations By Charles Dickens Essay

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Twins of Society

The novel, Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, explains the life of an impoverished boy who is changed when he is allowed money and education to become what he wants- a gentleman. Pip 's grand journey to fulfill the expectations set before him leads him to London, where Dickens compares the people that Pip meets. He separates them into separate economic classes, and utilizes this difference to show the extent to which each member will go to conform to the rules of traditional women and men of the time. This is demonstrated through one of the more prominent characters of his book, John Wemmick. Dickens uses Wemmick 's home and work life as an example to show how the role of masculinity varies throughout different socio-economic settings. This illustration gives the reader more of an in-look to, more specifically, expectations of men and women and how they are changed.

Dickens’ Wemmick holds a minor position in the estimable Mr. Jaggers’ office as clerk, to which he receives a reasonable salary and connections. To keep his job, he is expected to be professional, cold and unfeeling, to the clients and people he interacts with. Pip first notices this when they are walking among people on the streets and Wemmick makes "a way among them by saying coolly yet decisively, 'I tell you it 's no use, '" (20.73.3) and finishes by telling the people that Mr. Jaggers will not see them. This portrayal of blind and unbending obedience gives off the signal that he lacks feeling, which would seem very typical of a male. Initially, it shows the reader that Wemmick is very dedicated to his job, and will do whatever he can to make sure it stays that way, so he does what needs to be done. But when he politely admits to Pip that " ...


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...y faked). Because he is more in control in this setting, Wemmick may follow the desires that are not so easily linked with conventional masculinity of the particular London era.

Through Wemmick, Dickens is able to bring to life and personify the precedents set before men in the time of Great Expectations. He manages to incorporate the troubling issue of the social-economic interference of gender identities and the way that so many coped with it. London is a completely different place than where Pip grew up, but every place still has its rules and regulations that maintain a society 's consistency. That consistency usually includes the unspoken but blindly followed gender roles, and specific socio-economic settings. And because Dickens intertwined these two themes together, he demonstrates to the reader clearly the extent to which one and the other affect each other.

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