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Woman's status: Eighteenth Century to Modern Day

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Woman's status: Eighteenth Century to Modern Day Since Jane Austen wrote Pride and Prejudice, the way women are treated and the way they act has altered considerably. Women have become more independent and more sociable. The prospect of employment is one of the factors that have changed. In the eighteenth century, a man was looked down upon if he worked and a woman working was unheard of. There were only a few occupations women could belong to and these were for the destitute women who had to work to survive. These jobs were: Governess, seamstress, maid, nanny, housekeeper or other household service, bar maid or prostitute. All of these were degrading and paid very little. In particular, the book includes Mrs Bennet's brother who is an attorney, the soldiers and Mr. Collins. Mr. Collins is treated quite ill be Mr. Darcy at the Neitherfield ball, when Mr. Darcy walks away from him while he is mid conversation. I'll hazard a guess that Mr. Darcy would not dream of doing such a thing if Mr Collins was not of a lower and a working class. Miss. Bingley, Mrs. Hurst and Mr. Darcy look down on and express amusement at Mr. and Mrs. Phillips, Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner and Mrs. Bennet on, because they are of a working class. ...read more.


It is now compulsory for each person to attend a school until the minimum age of sixteen. Sewing, reading, letter writing, walking and instruments were what women used to do as leisure activities. They would occasionally play a round of cards, go riding, or dance. For example in Volume One, Chapter Two, Mr. Bennet asks Elizabeth, "When is your next ball to be, Lizzy?" A ball was extremely popular with women in the nineteenth century. It was a chance for them to meet young men and have some fun. Two centuries later, women are swimming, running, driving, watching television and doing the identical things for fun as men and activities that would disgrace people in the nineteenth century. Love, relationships and marriage, is one of the largest areas to have modified. It is customary to live with someone before even thinking of getting married and sex before marriage is not a great deal, but when you leap back in time to when 'Pride and Prejudice' was written things were viewed very differently. A girl belonged to her father until she got married, and then she was the possession of her husband. But to marry a woman, a man would have to request the permission of her father before she could consent. ...read more.


Jane says to Elizabeth near the beginning of 'Pride and Prejudice' that she will try to marry well for the family. At first Elizabeth has feelings for Wickham, which were soon put to rest by the truth of his character being exposed by Mr. Darcy, and then possibly Fitzwilliam, but nothing of consequence. Eventually she falls for the desirable Mr. Darcy, when she over looks her pride and prejudice although she speaks her mind and is thought by a lot to be disgraceful. Lady Catherine de Bourgh, who is Mr. Darcy's aunt, did not see this match with kindly eye. She calls upon Elizabeth at Longbourn and allows her sentiments known. Lady de Bourgh is very rich and expects to listened to because of this. She forbids Elizabeth from marrying Mr. Darcy before he proposes because of the gap in society. Only Elizabeth takes no notice and does it anyway. Divorce used to be a sin that only men could commit if he was unhappy with his wife. She was never able to divorce him until much later on. On average, today one in three marriages end in divorce and either person in that marriage can end it as long as they have been married for a year. As you can see, since the eighteenth century, many changes have occurred within daily life. Women are now equal to men. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sara Moore 10THY ...read more.

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