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explore the variety of attitudes towards marriage and love in Pride and Prejudice

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Introduction

'Pride and Prejudice' W.J.E.C literature- Pre 1914 prose. With detailed reference to chapters 1, 19, 34 and 58 of 'Pride and Prejudice' explore the variety of attitudes towards marriage and love. Jane Austen was born on December 16th 1775; she was the seventh of eight children. The Austen family, a happy, well educated and affectionate family lived at the rectory in the parish of steventon in Hampshire. Of all Jane Austen's novels 'Pride and Prejudice' seems to be the most popular and the most famous of them all. It is a love story, and romance is the key theme in the novel. In the times of Jane Austen, marriage helped women to move up in society and gain freedom which they could not get from their families. Men were the breadwinners in the household, however as of today marriage is very different as the two people have become equal, both partners have the same rights because generally they each bring in the same amount of income and commitment in the relationship. In the novel some of the characters are associated with Pride and Prejudice. Understanding someone by examining them closely plays an important part in the stories plot. This is where the word "Prejudice" comes in, the themes sated are constantly displayed in a variety of characters, including Mrs. Bennet and Elizabeth, as they both prejudge and believe rumours passed on by their friends and family. The novel also explores the attitudes towards marriage and love through the choice of characters and their likes and dislikes. Social classes are also taken into account playing a major role as a theme in Pride and Prejudice. People of higher class are very proud of themselves and do not like to socialise with those of a lower rank in society. An example of this is Mr. Darcy, who feels he has the moral superior and knowledge not to marry Elizabeth as he believes he is of a higher status and background to her. ...read more.

Middle

Bennet is not being supportive, and wants her daughter to marry Mr. Collins. "Lizzy I insist on your staying and hearing Mr. Collins." This suggests that Mrs. Bennet is scheming and forcing her to stay and accept. On the other hand we can also interpret this as Mrs. Bennet is only thinking for the wellbeing of her daughters, she is looking out for them in years to come, its always a prosperous thing to do. She does not see that her daughter is unenthusiastic and loathes to speak to him alone and as a result Elizabeth pleas for her mothers stay. "Dear mama, do not go." The reader may now sympathise with Elizabeth because in our modern society it is very rare for an arrange marriage to occur. Elizabeth finally agrees to hear Mr. Collins proposal. Even though Elizabeth knows what this will all come down to, she begins to listen to Mr. Collins lecture on why he wants to marry Elizabeth and not one her other sisters. "I singled you out as the companion of my future life." The audience now may believe Mr. Collins does really genuinely love Elizabeth, but I think the proposal was rushed, he should have got to know some of Elizabeth likes and dislikes before jumping in at the deep end. He genuine love short lived and he begins to talk about himself and how the marriage is going to affect his wellbeing and status. He wants to marry Elizabeth so he looks good for society. "Right thing for a clergy man" to "Set an example of matrimony in his parish." This suggest he is self concerned and doesn't care about the other characters effects of the marriage. The word "example" shows he is trying to do what's best for society and not what's best for himself. Mr Collins does not genuinely love Elizabeth as he doesn't state his love, it could be that he is shy but I very much doubt it because of the way he speaks and acts. ...read more.

Conclusion

The ongoing events not only gave them an experience but also provided them the opportunity to understand each other. I believe this will lead them to a peaceful and eternal marriage. The relationship between Elizabeth and Darcy reveals the importance of getting to know the partners before marriage. This is an interesting perception because it demonstrates true love. Jane Austen has presented these ideas in various ways. The marriage of Jane and Bingley was reliant on love at first sight, which I do not believe can never occur. Love and marriage are significant issues in 'Pride and Prejudice'. Jane Austen understood that the perfect relationship existed between two people who respected and treasured one another. At first, Elizabeth and Darcy do not appreciate each other, they both believe they are better than one another. Darcy is wealthy but the Bennet's are of a lower social class. This creates views and tension of pride and prejudice. These have to be concentrated before the two of them can be merged at the end of the novel. Furthermore Jane Austen shows us the reader relationships that do not work out. Charlotte Lucas and Mr. Collins marry for convenient reasons whereas Lydia and Wickham are physically attracted to one another. Mr. Bennet makes fun of his poor wife and neglects his duties by retreating into his office. We presume that Elizabeth, Darcy, Jane and Bingley will be content because they have chosen their companion wisely. Jane Austen shows us that, in the nineteenth century, it was vital for a women who had little or no money to marry a wealthy man. However, also show the reader that there must always be love in order for the relationship to work. The definition of love is an important factor to consider in a relationship to money, for it appears many types in the novel. The main distinction is between false love for material purposes as in Charlotte and Mr Collins case, or love appearing genuine, existing despite social difficulties, in Darcy and Elizabeth marriage. Money and power are the main motives for marriage without real affection. ...read more.

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