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Discuss the Importance of Letters in 'Pride and Prejudice'.

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Introduction

Daniel Wright Discuss the Importance of Letters in 'Pride and Prejudice' First published in 1813 and written by Jane Austen, 'Pride and Prejudice' is still thought of as being one of the best known novels of all time. Jane Austen's novels are important because they help demonstrate the crude coercive power of society which was not just of her day, but exists today. The letters featured in 'Pride and Prejudice' at this time were written in the epistolary form. Writing the letter in this form allowed us into the minds of the characters, we could discover characters feelings and emotions, and it could also reveal their personalities. The letters used in 'Pride and Prejudice' played a vital role as dramatic devices to further the plot. Historically, it needs to be remembered that letters formed an important communication device between characters; and finally, Austen wanted to express her themes of pride and prejudice through her letters. Jane Austen writes her letters in such a way that we can discover a characters personality, before we even meet them. ...read more.

Middle

It also gives us an in sight into the future of Lydia and Wickham as a couple by the way they are so insufficient in their supports and Wickham's lack of feelings for Lydia tell us that something is bound to go wrong with their relationship. Lydia's attitude also shows in other letters 'Lydia promised to write very often and very minutely...but her letters were always long expected and very short.' In her novel Jane Austen creates obstacles for certain characters to overcome. This can also reveal a Character's personality. The letter from Caroline to Jane, informing her that they have gone to stay in London, splits up Jane and the Bingleys. It also moves the story to a different location, therefore it furthers the plot. Miss Caroline Bingley is shown to be extremely insincere in the way she writes her letter. "It is unlucky, that you should not be able to see your friends before they leave the country." ...read more.

Conclusion

The letters featured in 'Pride and Prejudice' give us an insight into the social etiquette and historical background at that time. This is shown in the novel by the way Darcy has to personally hand his letter of apology to Lizzy and Lizzy is unable to reply. In those days only engaged couples were able to write to each other. If people who weren't married sent letters back and forth to each other it could mean that the people involved could be accuses of having a relationship with each other. Letters in 'Pride and Prejudice' help us a great deal to come to grip with the novel as a whole. They were used to reveal certain characters and also used as a dramatic device to further the plot. By using letters in 'Pride and Prejudice' Jane Austen was able to easily put across her views and the theme of 'Pride and Prejudice'. We are able to glean the social and historical importance of letters while still at the same time enjoy one of Jane Austen's most achieved novels of all time. ...read more.

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