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The Difference in the Importance of Marriage and Money in Austen's Pride and Prejudice and Today.

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Introduction

Travis Smith Dr. Goodman British Literature 1/2 October 17, 2003 The Difference in the Importance of Marriage and Money in Austen's Pride and Prejudice and Today During the days of Jane Austen, a financially stable marriage was crucial to many women. On the contrary, some of the women did not think marriage was mainly about money. These concepts reflect through some of Austen's characters in her comic novel of manners, Pride and Prejudice. While writing this novel, Austen illustrates the way of life during her time period through her characters. The idea of marriage being financially crucial to some women is not as true today like it was during Austen's time period. Women's lives have changed considerably over the past years, making this idea not as common. Women today do not have problems in common with those of Austen's characters. After reading Austen's Pride and Prejudice, readers can compare the financial problems of women today to those of the women of Austen's time, finding the difference between them the importance of money and marriage. ...read more.

Middle

Mrs. Bennett biggest concern was marrying her daughters off to wealthy men such as Mr. Bingley. She knew that marriage was an important issue to all women during that time. Mrs. Bennett found herself a wealthy husband in Mr. Bennett, and hopes that her daughters do the same: "If I can but see one of my daughters happily settled at Netherfield and all the others equally well married, I shall have nothing to wish for." If all Bennett girls get married Mrs. Bennett will be happy. She wishes for nothing else but for her daughters to be married to wealthy men. Mrs. Bennett goes as far as to plot to get her daughter, Jane Bennett, sick so she will be able to stay at Netherfield with Mr. Bingley. She herself does anything to get her daughters married because she believes that marriage is the crucial part of a woman's life. Not all women during this time period thought marriage should be based solely off money. "As yet, she cannot be certain of the degree of her own regard, nor of its reasonableness. ...read more.

Conclusion

Women have become independent and are expected to be more than homemakers. Now, women have the option of daycare for their children while they hold regular jobs. Women are given more opportunities today then they were in the past, and are quick to take advantage of those opportunities. There are special circumstances in which women with little or no education try to get married to men that are "going places" or even women who are referred to as "gold-diggers," who dedicate their lives to finding husbands. Besides these few exceptions, women do not seek out husbands to secure their future financially and socially, like those of the women in Austen's novel, Pride and Prejudice. After finishing Pride and Prejudice good analytical readers can compare the marriage problems of women in past to women in the present. Marriage was critical to women of the past for financial and social status. On the contrary, today, marriage is not as vital to women financially. Women have not only become financially and socially independent, but independent in all aspects. The present has changed drastically from the past meaning that marriage is not as important to most women today for financial reasons, as in the past. ...read more.

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