The novel 'Pride and Prejudice', written by Jane Austin, tells the
story of a man, his five daughters, and his wife whose sole purpose in
life is to marry off her daughters to 'suitable' men. Her eldest
daughter, Jane is her most prized daughter. Mrs. Bennet is assured
that Jane's beauty and meticulous manners will win her a high-quality
husband who may be able to support not just Jane, but her other
sisters as well. The story is told by the second daughter, Elizabeth.
She does not necessarily want to be confined to a marriage of
convenience and social status. Elizabeth is the only character who
demands to marry not only a suitable man, but also one she loves. Her
younger sisters however, Lydia and Catherine are immature and simply
obsessed with flirting with officers. Jane Austin clearly conveys her
judgment of the characters through their actions and through their
marriages. Once Mrs. Bennet begins to accomplish her goal of marrying
her daughters, the reader is able to evaluate each of the marriages
and their circumstances. There are four main marriages in the novel:
Charlotte's marriage to Mr.Collins, Lydia's marriage to Wickham,
Jane's marriage to Mr. Bingley, and Elizabeth's marriage to Mr.Darcy.
Jane Austen uses the character of Elizabeth to voice her opinions on
the makings of a good marriage.
Mr. Collins will be the inheritor of the Bennet family's home when Mr.
Bennet dies. When Mrs.Bennet hears Mr.Collins may be interested in one
of the daughters she is ecstatic because this will ensure that the
home stays with one of her girls. Mr. Collins hears that Jane is
... middle of paper ...
... Mr. Darcy did not have to overcome so many barriers. The only barrier
that exists for him is the vast difference in family class between the
two. However, this seems to bother others much more than it bothers
The marriage between Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth shows the most promise.
They genuinely love each other. The most unlikely marriage to occur of
the three previously mentioned marriages turns out to be the
strongest! Darcy is a man of reason, stability, and intellect.
Elisabeth is an intellectual equal to Mr. Darcy, and through her
marriage to Mr. Darcy is now more socially stable.
Jane Austen clearly conveys her judgment of the characters through
their actions and through their marriages. Lydia and Wickham's
marriage is the only marriage that is portrayed as being irrational
and altogether irresponsible.
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