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Reading Notes: Great Expectations Plot Outline

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Ari Gardarsson Reading Notes: Great Expectations October 23, 2011 IB English The book Great Expectations is written in three volumes with each volume around 20 chapters. Charles Dickens, the author, was paid by the word which was quite evident because he rambled on sometimes and elongated sentences with unnecessary details of either objects or people that didn't affect the story at all. It is also a bildungsroman novel, meaning that it focuses on the physiological and moral growth of the protagonist (in this case Pip) from youth to adulthood. Great Expectations is a book about a boy named Philip Pirrip, or Pip as he is most often called. He lives in Kent with his sister, Mrs. Joe (Georgiana), who raised him by "hand", and her husband Mr. Joe. In the beginning, he encounters an escaped convict, Magwitch, who tells Pip to steal food and a file for him. He thanks the boy and is touched by the fact that Pip brought him what he asked for (even though Pip really didn't have a choice). However, later the convict is caught. Pip is then invited, unexpectedly, to miss Havisham's, a wealthy recluse (as she has locked herself away from sunlight), house. ...read more.


But Pip saves her from the dust by opening the windows and "sets her free". They then hold hands and leave the wretched house and Pip says, "I saw the shawdow of no parting from her." This, to me, gives the sort of impression that he will be imprisoned in this relationship forever because he doesn't seem entirely happy to be finally with the love of his life. Or maybe the sun is behind them casting their shadow out in front of them and can literally see the shadow of them holding hands. There were many important characters in this book but in my opinion, only three stood out from the rest: Pip (obviously), Miss Havisham, and Estella. Pip was a young boy in kent and was said to have no expectations and was beaten with many objects by his sister Mrs. Joe. He is a poor boy but quickly makes his way up in the world, after inheriting a great deal of money, which he thought came from miss Havisham. But it is later found out that is came from Magwitch. Pip goes then to London to become a gentleman and quickly becomes a snob and is easily embarrassed by Joe when he comes to visit. ...read more.


At the end of the book she is found sitting at miss Havisham's house and seems to be falling under the same "spell" that took over Miss Havisham and made her into a recluse. But Pip stops that from happening. In the book there were some words that seemed to be normal to find in an old English novel. Words that wouldn't be heard in modern day Britain. � Gibbet: A place where people were hanged. � Flaxen: A pale grayish-yellow color, often referring to hair. � Betwixt: Between. There were many other words that showed up in the novel which were quite perplexing and required me to pick up a dictionary (aka merriam-webster.com) and search for the word in question. The book does pertain to present day reality because sometimes, if people inherit a large sum of money, they might blow it all and lose their friends because the person becomes and snob and once everything is over, he is left with nothing. Luckily, however, Pip still had Joe, Biddy and Herbert and in the very end, Estella. It also shows greed and karma because being greedy with all of his money, he became a snob and blew off Joe when he came to visit so karma decided to step in and "shoot" him down. ...read more.

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