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

Is the Older Pip too harsh on his younger self while narrating this novel? This novel focuses on a boy called Pip who starts his life as a lower-class citizen

Extracts from this document...


Is the Older Pip too harsh on his younger self while narrating this novel? This novel focuses on a boy called Pip who starts his life as a lower-class citizen but as the book progresses, is exposed to a life that he does not know, the life of a gentleman but Dickens challenges what this means. He wasn't happy with the way that labels were being given to different classes in the nineteenth century. For example the upper class are gentlemen and gentlewomen but the lower classes can only be scum. So he asks "Can one not be an upper-class citizen and still be a good, respectable member of society?" Or to phrase it another way just because one leads a life of upper-class wealth, society etc. does this make him a true gentleman? I will focus on whether the old Pip, narrating this book, is fair in thinking that his younger self makes all the mistakes when being allowed the choice to be a gentleman or continue with his previous, ordinary but happy life without Estella. I called myself Pip and came to be called Pip Pip, adopted son of a blacksmith, starts out his life as a simple, innocent child. ...read more.


over and I agree with this statement, as does the older Pip reflecting on himself, I think because later he says perhaps I had not been sufficiently grateful to Biddy. Even Estella gives him fair warning of her situation when it comes to loving and that he should steer clear of her Don't you take warning? she says this quite sternly but he takes little notice which brings him his downfall. His downfall is when he comes into a lot of money provided by a mysterious benefactor and starts becoming proud I would not have had Miss Havisham Estella see it on any account and misunderstanding what a gentleman should do and be and because of this he decides to sacrifice his loved blacksmith future I had liked it once but once was not now. He has now lost his innocence that he had in the earlier stages of this novel. Now he knows so much more of the world of classes and discrimination which, Dickens can relate to, having been from humble upbringing himself. Dickens's works being characterized by attacks on social evils, injustice, and hypocrisy and this can be seen here. He thinks that a gentleman must look down on people of lower social status and by doing so repels Joe. ...read more.


I have never seen two men look at each other more oddly at each other than Jaggers and Wemmick did. Pip has managed, in half the time that Wemmick has been in association with Jaggers, to put Jaggers at ease, which is quite incredible. Another example is Magwitch, who makes this huge sacrifice to Pip because of Pip kindness, though small, to him on the marshes. He brought out good in a hardened convict, again, quite a feat. I'm quite content to take my chance. I've seen my boy and he can be a gentleman without me. He also dies happy knowing that his daughter lives and his "gentleman," Pip, loves her. So we do get a feeling that everything, although in shambles through the most of the book, is put in place. If he had been so unlikable as the older Pip seems to think then he wouldn't be loved by so many. Like Hebert, that loves him as a best friend and Joe loves him with a fatherly love. Or Magwitch, who loves him with a completely selfless fatherly love, Wemmick who again loves him with that friendly love, and at the ambiguous ending possibly even Estella though she is convinced that she can't love. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ikenna Igboaka Page 1 5/9/2007 ...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. George Eliot criticised Dickens for 'encouraging the miserable fallacy that high morality and refined ...

    that [he] enjoy[ed] that, sir', lifts the convict's spirits, making him feel part of 'the people', rather than a common animal - a stray. Pip does in fact prove what George Eliot criticises Dickens for, especially in his prim and proper manner: 'if you would please to let me keep upright sir...perhaps I could attend more'.

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

    It is a moment of humour again but it makes a serious point, ridiculing Victorian snobbishness. Event though Pip was brought up 'by hand', he was still brought up (by Joe) and the books shows that it is better that way, than not at all.

  1. Charles Dickens views about class in the novel,

    It was hard to maintain your health if you did not have sufficient funds. When Miss Havisham, an "immensely rich" lady bent on revenge towards men after being jilted on her wedding day, invited young Pip to her manor "to play", Mrs.

  2. How do Pip’s Perceptions of People and Class Change Throughout the Novel?

    it has something to do with the way Miss Havisham has brought her up, to break someone else's heart like hers was broken, " Well? You can break his heart." In chapter fourteen Pip says, " I had believed in The Forge as the glowing road to manhood and independence.

  1. Great-Expectations is just one novel that follows a tradition of novelsthat choose to focus ...

    of the English legal system and set out to try to make a difference by writing in hope he might influence those in power. Dickens believed reform was needed to alleviate poverty, which he felt was the main cause of crimes against person and poverty.

  2. How do Pip's perceptions of people and class change throughout the novel?

    He would always be a labourer according to her. All the insults that she was throwing at Pip made him feel very small. Pip was always waiting for Estella to insult him with, he kept feeling that she was "lying in wait" for Pip to do something that she wouldn't like.

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