Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice Essay

Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice Essay

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Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice


"It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in
possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife"

Jane Austen used this quote to open her second book, 'Pride and
Prejudice', which was first published in 1813. This is a story of the
attitudes towards love and marriage in the nineteenth century, through
the eyes of a number of people in different family situations and
levels of society. It explores what was socially acceptable and
disgraceful at the time, as well as the author, Jane Austen's,
personal opinion on the matter. This is shown mainly through the
character of Elizabeth Bennet, the second of five daughters of Mr and
Mrs Bennet, inhabitants of the Longbourn estate. At this time, it was
very important that young girls of around sixteen and above should aim
to marry as soon as possible to avoid becoming destitute and unable to
support themselves after the inevitable death of their father, whose
estate would usually be inherited by the next male heir in the family.
In the case of the Bennets, this is a distant cousin with whom they
had not been in contact with for some time. His name is Mr. Collins...

Another worry for young women at the beginning of the nineteenth
century was how high a reputation they had. It was unorthodox for a
female to admit, like Lydia does when in Meryton, that she had come
into town to find a man, because she would seem very eager and this
may result in people looking down on her. On the other hand, if a lady
acted as though she didn't like a man so that he wouldn't think she
was chasing him, the man might think that she really disliked him and
decide to admire another woman instead. Life could be very

complicated...


... middle of paper ...


... You know that it
is not sound, and that you would never act in this way yourself."

This makes it perfectly clear that Lizzy thinks that it would be
impossible for anyone, no matter how set-against romance they are,to
marry someone for a reason other than love. This proves that she is a
romantic, and once set in her ways cannot see how anybody could think
differently to her.

In conclusion, I would say that Jane Austen looks down upon marrying
for material success or gain, and superficial attraction and mismatch
because at least one person in the relationship will end up being
unhappy. She does, however, believe in marrying for love because you
will be able to live the rest of your life happily with a partner you
are devoted to. I also think that if you choose to marry, you should
only do it for this reason because I believe that all you need is
love.

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