• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explore how chapter 49 of Great Expectations fits into the overall scheme of the text. How important is it to understanding the author's themes of: gentlemen and the role of women in Victorian society?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Explore how chapter 49 of Great Expectations fits into the overall scheme of the text. How important is it to understanding the author's themes of: gentlemen and the role of women in Victorian society? In this essay I will explore how chapter forty-nine fits into the overall scheme of Dickens's 'Great Expectations'. In addition I will also describe how this chapter helps readers to understand two important themes of this novel: what it means to be a 'Victorian gentleman' and Dickens's comments on the role of women in Victorian society. 'Great Expectations' is a novel about what it is to be a true gentleman; it also explores the life of a young boy and his quest to become a gentleman. This can be illustrated by when pip explains to biddy his tutor " I want to be a gentleman... I am disgusted with my calling and with my life" this shows that pip is not happy with his life and wants to change it. He doesn't want to grow up to be a customary worker like Joe, his sister's husband; he wants to be a gentleman. Chapter forty-nine is a crucial point in the development of the plot. At this point, Pip visits miss Havesham who feels guilty for having caused Estella to break his heart. She also realizes what she has done and what she has bought Estella up to be like ". ...read more.

Middle

After this offer Joe is outraged hence his comment "money - can make compensation to me- fur the loss of the little child - what come to the forge - and every the best of friends!" Here the loss of the worker means nothing to Joe and nor does the compensation, it's the loss of the child that he brought up to be his son that is the loss to him. This proves that money is not everything to Joe; this is showing gentleman properties to Pip that will follow his examples. By the time of chapter forty nine pip had become a gentleman and is equal in the eyes of what a true gentleman should be, resembling Joe. When asked by Miss Havisham if he thinks he could ever forgive her, he replies '"O, Miss Havesham," said I, "I can do it now"'. Pip also comments 'I had said and done what I could to ease her mind'. By doing this he is showing true gentleman qualities, as this person he was forgiving made him feel inadequate and small at the start of the story. Dickens is starting to finally show pip in his true colours at this point in the novel- a true gentleman. In contrast to Dickens's views on what it is to be a true gentleman his views on the role of a woman in Victorian society are depicted throughout chapter forty-nine. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is shown in chapter forty-nine exceptionally by Miss Havesham when she cries out repetitively 'what have I done! What have I done!' This sentence shows the view that Miss Havesham is mentally unbalanced and has realised what she has become and what she done with her life. After this she cries out again " write under my name, "I forgive her!" Here she is begging for forgiveness for what she has done and wants to make her peace with pip so she has feeling of forgiveness in her. The last piece of writing style in chapter forty-nine was cleverly written to make the reader want to read on and think something is going to happen towards the end of the chapter (Miss Havesham's death). When Pip walks to Satis house he remembers things from his childhood they may indicate something bad is about to happen for instance he mentions the bells sounding like funeral music. To explain, all these hints remind the reader that something is about to happen another "a new desolate in the desolate house had told me so". Here again imagery has been used to make the reader believe that something is going to happen and make them read on. To conclude, I have explored how Dickens depicts the themes of a Victorian gentlemen and the role of women in contempery Victorian society in detail. Also I have explains some of Dickens styles of writing and how he uses them to keep the reader engaged and questioning the moral question he states; what defines a true gentleman. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Great Expectations section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Great Expectations essays

  1. Pip wants to grow up to be a gentleman. Do you think he succeeds?

    He also meets a pale young gentleman, who challenges Pip to a fight, but Pip wins. Like the soap-man, this boy is also very important later on. Years later Pip has not changed, he and Joe have been to Miss Havisham for Pip to be apprenticed as a blacksmith and Miss Havisham pays for his training.

  2. How does Chapter 14 of Great Expectations explore themes present in the novel as ...

    Just like today, a full education is required to become a gentleman. Pip receives his education from Mr. Wopsle's aunt's school, and also as a young man from Matthew Pocket. He realizes through examples of Joe, Biddy and Magwitch that social and educational improvement are irrelevant to the real worth of a person.

  1. Consider the role and presentation of women in Great Expectations and their influence on ...

    "Miss Havisham watched us all the time, directed my attention to Estella's beauty, and made me notice it the more by trying her jewels on Estella's breast and hair." This is Miss Havisham's cruel and heartless way to gain revenge on all men with Estella.

  2. An exploration of the ways in which issues of class and status are presented ...

    The value of hard work is again shown to be embraced by Dickens, when we see that Pip's moral decline starts with his life of dissipation and idleness in the city, as I stated earlier he disowns Joe, and loses sight of the simple humility, intrinsic value, and happiness found in hard work.

  1. Charles Dickens's writing techniques in Great Expectations.

    They are always flattering him and commenting on his job. Pip quickly becomes popular so he is always wanted for a number of things; such as dinners or sleep overs. All the attention that Pip gets from his new found friends helps to boost his self esteem to a level that he has never experienced before.

  2. Discuss how Dickens in 'Great Expectations' constructs female characters and the extent to which ...

    Sadly, even though Estella is very aware of her inner self she is not able to use that knowledge to help herself. This emotional shut-off to the world is the product of Miss Havisham who has manipulated Estella into a tool for revenge against mankind.

  1. Analysing and explaining Charles Dickens' Great Expectations; Chapter 1.

    In leans film this gives us the idea that Pip is probably rich, hence well looked after and happy, but in the BBC's it suggests that Pip is probably weak, ill, unhappy and very poor. Because being poor is generally associated with unhappiness, distress and darkness, this implies that in

  2. The themes that are introduced and emphasised in Chapter 8 of Charles Dickens Great ...

    There is not a shadow of a doubt concerning the feelings of great discontentedness at the time of this novel. The atmosphere throughout the novel is also maintained and studied in great depth through Pip's vivid narrative in Chapter 8 when he enters the grounds of Satis House and sees what life can be like outside of Joe's simple forge.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work