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Compare the delivery of and response to offers of marriage in Pride and Prejudice

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Introduction

´╗┐Compare the delivery of and response to offers of marriage in Pride and prejudice Marriage was a necessity for women in Austen?s nineteenth century England. The novel Pride and Prejudice establishes marriage as the central theme. This is demonstrated in the irony of the first line: ?It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.? There is an apparent aphorism that a woman?s well being depends upon a good marriage. Mrs Bennet?s ?business of her life was to get her daughters married.? This was to secure their, and her, own future. The first proposal in Pride and Prejudice is that of Mr Collins to Elizabeth. It was a very unromantic proposal and it came across to be a kind of business transaction as figures were mentioned along with management policy. Mr Collins has an awkward arrogance as he assumes given the patriarchal society in which they live, that she would accept this unromantic proposal. ...read more.

Middle

In most cases it did not matter how certain it was of giving happiness as long as you gain a secure establishment. Elizabeth?s judgement of character is not as good as she thought when she is so surprised that Charlotte marries Mr Collins and Charlotte tells her that she is ?not romantic?. Through Mr Collins, Austen offers a critique of the church of England as at this time the movement of the Methodism broke away from and challenged the church of England. He is also there to allow Austen to juxtapose Elizabeth and Charlotte?s characters. The next proposal has two levels to it, the first being the obvious and unromantic level, the second being a more hidden romantic side to it. The unromantic side of Darcy is shown when he so bluntly mentions the inferiority of her family?s social status. Darcy then goes on to say that ?Nor am I ashamed of the feelings I related. They were natural and just.? This is true as he is from a wealthy background and was meant to marry someone of similar social status but his love overcame his pride. ...read more.

Conclusion

states that ?of this place [she] might have been mistress!? and that she might have ?rejoiced? in the rooms as her own, but on the other hand goes on to say that it ?could never be?. After Elizabeth accepts the proposal she feels a lack of direction but doesn?t care as they are in love. Elizabeth then goes to her father to ask for his agreement and tells him that him that ?it is settled between us?. This reminds us of Mr Collins as it is like a business transaction, because the word ?settled? makes us feel like she only accepted the marriage because she wanted a secure future, if so Elizabeth has betrayed her ?independence?. In conclusion marriage is a vital part of a women?s life in Austen?s England, whether that means marrying for security or for pure love, because if you did not get married you would probably end up dying a companion, teacher or governess. Mary Wollstonecraft tells us in Thoughts on the education of daughters that there is a ?pressing social reality that ? for women there must be marriage.? ...read more.

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