Essay Comparing Two Proposals to Elizabeth Bennet

Essay Comparing Two Proposals to Elizabeth Bennet

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Comparing Two Proposals to Elizabeth Bennet

The tow proposals to Elizabeth Bennet differed in many ways. Both came
out of nowhere for Elizabeth and to her were utterly preposterous at
the time. Elizabeth is aware of Mr Collin's fondness toward her and so
when her mother urges her to have a private audience with Mr Collins
she tries her best to avoid having to endure his proposal and giving
him the rejection that she eventually gives. Lizzy says, 'Dear Ma'am,
do no go- I beg you will not go- Mr Collins must excuse me. - He can
have nothing to say to me that any body need not hear. I am going away
myself.' This is Elizabeth's way of politely trying to indicate to her
mother that she does not want to be left alone with her cousin and
therefore does not want to hear his proposal. Her mother however is
oblivious to Elizabeth's efforts to avoid this embarrassing situation
and Mrs Bennet simply says, 'Lizzy I insist on your staying and
hearing Mr Collins.' Mrs Bennet does not seem to care about her
daughter's obvious resistance to marrying Mr Collins; however I think
that she only has her family's best interests at heart. Mrs Bennet
knows that her estate is entailed to Mr Collins; If Elizabeth married
him it would ensure a comfortable financial situation for her and her
family once her husband had died.

When Mrs Bennet finally left, Elizabeth was left alone with Mr
Collins, and in his usual manner he launched into his proposal,
'Believe me, my dear Miss Elizabeth, that your modesty, so far from
doing you any disservice, rather adds to your other perfections. You
would have been less amiable in my eyes had there not been this little

... middle of paper ...

... woman 'should behave'. Women were 'supposed' to be meek, gentle and
passive creatures, which is everything opposite to how lizzy behaves
during both of these proposals. Both of these refusals would have been
surprising replies to two very eligible men. As a reader I never had
any doubt that Lizzy would refuse any proposal from Mr Collins,
however I can see the sense of the times in marrying for financial
gain considering women's rights and constraints. The two proposals are
different in the fact that one could never be accepted and the other
would be sensible financially. However, I think that they are both
very similar in the way that neither emphasises their love or
admiration of Elizabeth, but merely highlights her and her family's
social position and ends up insulting he far more than the compliment
of a proposal.

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