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Jane Austen Pride And Prejudice & Emma. Discuss How Jane Austen Conveys Her Moral Concerns In Pride And Prejudice And Emma.

1496 words - 6 pages

Jane Austen's moral concerns are ever present in the major themes of Pride and Prejudice and Emma, and by incorporating them into her novels she is symbolizing real life - or what was real life for her then.Austen portrays the family as primarily responsible for the moral and intellectual education of children. Failure to do so properly has severe consequences. Mr. and Mrs. Bennet's failure to provide this education for their daughters leads to the complete shamefulness and silly delight of Lydia, whose sister Kitty is following closely in her frolicking footsteps, and to the overwhelming insecurity of their third daughter, the wannabe intellectual, Mary. Elizabeth and Jane, the two eldest daughters, have managed to develop many good qualities and strong, admirable characters in spite of the carelessness of their parents, perhaps through the help of their studies and the good influence of Mr. and Mrs. Gardiner, who are the only relatives in the novel that work towards the education of the daughters, leading them when in need of help with good advice and judgment. Elizabeth and Jane are constantly forced to put up with the foolishness and poor judgment of their mother and the sarcastic indifference of their father. Even when Elizabeth advises her father not to allow Lydia to go to Brighton, he ignores the advice because he thinks it would too difficult to deal with Lydia's complaining. The result is the scandal of Lydia's elopement with Wickham.Emma also suffers from the irresponsibility of her family. Because her mother died when she was just a baby, she was raised by her father and governess, the newly married Mrs. Weston and former Miss Taylor. Her father, a ridiculous valetudinarian, never challenged or questioned her and her actions, and only praised her, and so she was raised to believe that she was always right and that her actions were not to be scrutinized. Miss Taylor, 'who had fallen little short of a mother in affection' had been 'less of a governess and more of a friend' and Emma would always do what she wanted , 'highly esteeming Miss Taylor's judgment but directed chiefly by her own.' The result is Emma's detestable pride in herself and complete lack of consideration for the opinions of others.Jane Austen is critical of a lot of the marriages that took place in her time. Pride and Prejudice demonstrates how many women such as Charlotte need to marry men they are not in love with simply in order to gain financial security. The entailment of Longbourn is an extreme hardship on the Bennet family, and is quite obviously unjust, leaving his daughters facing the very real possibility of a poor financial situation in the future which both makes it almost necessary for them to marry and makes it more difficult to marry 'well'. Jane Austen believes that women are at least as intelligent and capable as men, and considers their inferior position in society to be unfair. Through the plot of Pride and Prejudice it is clear that Austen wants to...

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