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The novel Pride and Predjudice is based on money and marriage. Discuss.

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Introduction

The novel Pride and Predjudice is based on money and marriage. Discuss. The novel reflects society at the time in which it was written, womens powerlessness in a patriarichal society. Men dominated all walks of life and expected women to attend their every need. In order to secure a "safe future" for themselves women expended a lot of time and energy learning skills with which to attract a man of substance. Indeed Darcys view was 'A woman must have a thourough knowledge of music, singing, drawing, dancing and the modern languages' an extremely tall order for any one. The major themes of money and marriage are indeed married together in the opening lines of this novel 'It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man, in possession of a large fortune must be in want of a wife'. During this period of time moral themes such as love and respect did not play a pivotal role in marriage. ...read more.

Middle

'Happiness in a marriage is entirely a matter of chance'. It is sad that three of the marriages in the novel ended up as unhappy unions. The Bennets marriage was based on physical attraction. The Collins marriage, a financial union and the marriage of Lydia and Wickham based on passion was doomed to fail even before it had begun, 'His affection for her soon sunk into indifference; hers lasted a little longer; and in spite of her youth and her manners, she retained all the claims to reputation which her marriage had given her'. Everyone helped them in their struggle. Jane and Bingley received them to stay for long periods of time. 'Both of them frequently stayed so long that even Bingleys good humour was overcome, and he proceeded so far as to talk of giving hint to be gone.' Darcy also assisted them, 'Though Darcy could never receive them at Pemberly yet, for Elizabeths sake, he assisted him....' ...read more.

Conclusion

Mrs. Gardiner believed that it takes time for love to grow. 'The expression of so violently in love is hackneyed, so doubtful it gives me little idea. Its often applied to feelings which arise from only hours of acquaintance.' Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner are responsible for making Lydia's marriage a respectable one and in some ways for bringing Elizabeth and Darcy together at Pemberley. A very caring and responsible couple. I do believe that the novel 'Pride and Prejudice' is based on money and marriage in the nineteenth century. Marriage brought social status and popularity to a family. 'The Bennet's were to be the luckiest family...' Elizabeth and Jane were lucky as the men they loved were also rich. Financial security was of the utmost importance with social standing running a close second. It is a sad reflection at that time that these unwritten social rules existed and women treated in such a manner. After a very long struggle attitudes to women have slowly been changing. In some cultures women are still treated as second class citizens but in the western world today women have very nearly abtained equality. ...read more.

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