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'In Pride and Prejudice, Austen explores the conditions that will allow for the right kind of marriage. Which of the marriages do you think she sees as likely to be the happiest, and why?

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Introduction

'In Pride and Prejudice, Austen explores the conditions that will allow for the right kind of marriage. Which of the marriages do you think she sees as likely to be the happiest, and why? In Pride and Prejudice, Austen explores the conditions that she believes are required for true happiness through different couples. The couples that she sees to have promising, long lasting relationships are portrayed through characters, which complement one another. She also shows how romantic feelings can overwhelm us. Couples where parties are in love with each other seem very happy, but even so, Austen shows us that this does not mean a long lasting relationship. Austen shows what she believes to be the contributing factors of a happy relationship with longevity, through how she portrays the main characters and their relationships. We are first introduced to Mr and Mrs Bennet at the beginning of the novel; it is their absurd personality clash that causes us to look for qualities in their relationship that could make a good marriage; their, seemingly, satisfied demeanours must not fool us into believing that theirs is a happy marriage. ...read more.

Middle

She also seems to think that her sisters envy her. This shows her immaturity. Only time can tell what will happen when she eventually grows up and sees the misfortune of her situation. It is possible that this admiration for Wickam will be sustained, but more likely that as Lydia grows up she will resent Wickam for his actions. The likelihood that this marriage will be happy is extremely low. Neither partner knows the true personality of the other. Their personalities are similar. Both are frivolous, unprincipled, with 'high animal spirits.' Such roguish behaviour from both parties can only be detrimental to their marriage. The Marriage of Jane and Bingley is one of two marriages in the novel that was a result of a productive chase. Jane and Bingley formed an attachment early in the novel but were drawn apart. If the marriages between the Charlotte and Mr Collins and the marriage of Mr and Mrs Bennet signify discord then the ideal marriage should signify harmony. This is why Austen shows approval in the way she portrays their relationship. Both are pleasant and agreeable with 'pleasant countenance' and 'easy unaffected manners.' ...read more.

Conclusion

We see this in her deeply strong adversity to the idea of Lydia exposing herself publicly in any way. Elizabeth and Darcy achieve their mutual admiration and respect only though the painful process of stripping away misunderstanding and self-deception, as they reveal to each other in chapter 58. Their marriage is rational because they have learned to know why they love each other and it is secure because it is hard-won. Austen portrays theirs to be the happiest match. She shows the ease and compatibility of their characters through the long journey that their relationship takes. She shows her opinion of marriage between classes through the two most explored couples, Jane and Bingley and Darcy and Elizabeth. We know that she, therefore, believes that is if is a match that is meant to be, then financial status will be unimportant. It is important that we analyse her views, as they appear to be different to common opinion at the time. She shows that women with 'sweet countenance and good nature' are equally 'marriageable' to the 'vivacious and witty'. She even shows the latter is more likely to be successful. Therefore, I believe that Austen sees the marriage of Elizabeth and Darcy to be the happiest and most promising. Charlie Matthews 10C 28/04/2007 1 of 3 ...read more.

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