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Compare and Contrast the two proposals to Elizabeth Bennet

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Compare and Contrast the 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. ...read more.


Elizabeth was far from flattered by his insulting proposal and she felt it 'absolutely necessary to interrupt him now.' Needless to say she goes on to reject his proposal, although Mr Collins does not accept it and makes the suggestion that she is merely teasing him and will accept if he asks again. She however assures him of her feelings and again refuses to marry him much to her mothers despair. The second proposal from Mr Darcy is far more abrupt than that from Mr Collins and even more insulting to Elizabeth and her place in society. She this time is the one who is oblivious to Mr Darcy's growing feelings toward her, '"In have I struggled it will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you."' Elizabeth's astonishment 'was beyond expression', throughout the whole of the novel she had thought him cols and disagreeable, but now he was telling her of his affections for her. However, I think that it is the way that he not only tells Elizabeth how he has been trying not to love her, but also in his next speech insulting her status, 'He spoke well but there were feelings besides those of the heart to be detailed... ...read more.


After her refusal Lizzy clearly feels an obligation to find out what truly happened when Mr Bingley left Netherfield and also of his dealings with Mr Wickham. Both of there behaviours in this scene would have been unacceptable for the times; both Mr Darcy's rudeness and Lizzy's forthright attitude would have been very uncommon in those socially restrained days. In both of these proposals Elizabeth acts in a way that is wholly improper considering the social etiquette of those times and how a 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. ...read more.

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