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How does Jane Austen show her views on the marriage conventions of the nineteenth century in the novel pride and prejudice

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Introduction

How does Jane Austen show her views on the marriage conventions of the nineteenth century in the novel pride and prejudice? First published in 1813, Pride and Prejudice has consistently been Jane Austen's most popular novel. It portrays life in the genteel rural society of the day. Jane Austen is considered by many the first real novelist, she had a very unique style of writing when she wrote all of her books, this is what I believe appealed to her readers, the style that she used was described as 'comedy of manners'. The comedy of manners satirizes the manners and affectations of a social class, often represented by stock characters, such as Mr. Collins. It has been the blueprint for romantic fiction in the writing world. Marriage is a pivotal theme in Pride and Prejudice, the conventions were different in the nineteenth century they were expected to marry for their own financial security. They also had to be married to a higher ranked man but within the same range of class, for example in the book when Charlotte Lucas marries Mr. Collins, they did not love each other but it suited them both to marry. Charlotte Lucas wanted a husband who could financially support her and Mr. Collins was on the hunt for a suitable young wife. He already had asked his cousin and main character in the book Elizabeth Bennet to marry him, she reluctantly disagreed but her mother was not concerned about her feelings, Mrs. ...read more.

Middle

In Pride and Prejudice this is indeed how Mrs Bennet will treat Mr Bingley, and her insensitive presumption begins the novels comedy. Mrs. Bennet has a certain attitude towards marriage; I think Austen wrote Mrs. Bennet in to the story as someone who she is the total opposite too. I think Jane Austen expresses herself through Elizabeth in this novel, she saw herself as a revolutionary woman. In the words of Mrs. Bennet "If I can see one of my daughters happily married at Netherfield... I shall wish for nothing more," in this quote she is implying that she does not care about her daughters happiness, mainly for hers. She disguises it very well though, it is made out that she wants what is best for her daughters but she wants her own fortune when she is older. Mr. Collins' attitude is to get married to a presentable woman in his standard of class. He firstly asks his cousin Elizabeth to marry him, she says no, but he continues to insist, finally he gets the point and asks her best friend to marry him. Mrs. Bennet wanted her daughters married and tries to encourage Elizabeth. Charlotte Lucas (Elizabeth's best friend) accepts his proposal. I think that Mr. Collins asked Charlotte because I think he may want to make Elizabeth envy them. The quote I choose to make my point with is from chapter 19 and reads "May I hope, madam, for your interest with ...read more.

Conclusion

Collins's addresses, by engaging them towards herself." Elizabeth has a very strong personality she is independent, and very strong headed. There are many quotes that I could select for this, but my selected quote would be "You are mistaken, Mr. Darcy, if you suppose that the mode of your declaration affected me in any other way, than as it spared me the concern which I might have felt in refusing you, had you behaved in a more gentleman-like manner." I chose this quote because this shows that she does not marry just for money, it is a very respectable deed. Darcy is a very arrogant and rich man; he seems to have a very odd relationship with Elizabeth. He is almost perfect in the eyes of a woman; he was rich, handsome, clever and witty. "And taking her hand, he would have given it to Mr. Darcy who, though extremely surprised, was not unwilling to receive it, when she instantly drew back, and said with some discomposure to Sir William- "indeed, sir, I have not any intention of dancing. I entreat you not to suppose that I moved this way in order to beg for a partner." This quote shows how arrogant Darcy is. In conclusion I think that Austen's final message regarding marriage is that one should not marry for money, but marry for love. She portrays herself in my opinion through Elizabeth and Darcy was a dream couple. ...read more.

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