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How Does Austen Present The Relationship Between Lizzie And Darcy In The First Twenty Chapters Of The Novel? Essay On Pride And Prejudice Novel By Jane Austen

831 words - 3 pages

How does Austen present the relationship between Lizzie and Darcy in the first twenty chapters of the novel?The relationship between Elizabeth and Darcy is without doubt an incredibly tempestuous one, but the main problems at the start of their relationship all arise because of their own personal qualities, through the characters’ own faults, though it is ironic as neither character is able to see their own faults. The pride and prejudices of both characters leads to an incredibly bad first impression,and the effect of this resonates throughout the book and their relationship.Class difference is arguably the biggest barrier to the relationship between Elizabeth and Darcy, as both characters are very aware of their difference in social stature. Darcy looks down on Elizabeth because of her family and their inferior social connections, and so despite the fact that Elizabeth is the ideal match for him, he tries not to let himself fall in love with her. He firsts meets Elizabeth at the Meryton ball, and at Bingley’s suggestion that he dance with Elizabeth, he replies that she ‘is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me’. His reaction shows how he views the people of Meryton, and it is clear that he sees them all as his social inferiors, and because of this he refuses to dance with someone who is ‘not handsome enough’ for him. He also expresses this thought with Elizabeth’s hearing, and this further shows his arrogance, as he does not even care as to whether or not she hears him because she is so inferior to him. The rudeness that Darcy treats Elizabeth with here creates a very negative picture of Darcy in her mind. This comment shows Darcy’s own sense of social superiority, and shows that for him, their class difference is the main difficulty in admitting his love for Elizabeth.Both characters have a great deal of pride, and on occasion it borders upon arrogance. Elizabeth considers Darcy to be incredibly arrogant, but is unable to see how proud she can be occasionally. Darcy’s pride is mainly due to his social superiority in life, whereas Elizabeth’s pride stems from a belief in her own intellectual superiority, and she struggles to admit when she is wrong. Elizabeth, when talking to the Bingleys and Darcy, says ‘Yes-I understand you perfectly’. This suggests that she is showing them that though she is not their equal socially, she is intellectually. The hyphen after ‘Yes-’ creates a pregnant pause, and Elizabeth soon follows with ‘I understand you...

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