Pride And Prejudice Essay

986 words - 4 pages

Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice portrays the social relationships among middle and upper- class families in Regency England. Pride and Prejudice relies heavily on the use of irony and satire and is a classic example of a comedy of manners. Austen expertly uses irony to satirise both the themes of social class and the disproportionate weight placed on marriage. This is clearly manifested in the novel’s highly stereotypical characters.

The novel is iconic for its opening line, where Austen immediately establishes the ironic narrative voice: “it is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.” This quote symbolises the overwhelming importance of marriage in Austen’s time. Pride and Prejudice constantly reinforces the notion that marriage was often not a by-product of love in Austen’s time. Rather, it was seen as a tool, which symbolised the allegiance of two families. Austen heavily parodies this unromantic view of marriage.

Through the use of satire and irony, Austen conveys important information about key issues she has with the significance placed on social standing, highlighting several aspects of the gentry that she distrusts. 

Social class is satirised as it is portrayed as overriding everything else in life, including love and happiness. Darcy conveys this through his comment, “could you expect me to rejoice in the inferiority of your connections… whose condition in life is so decidedly beneath my own?” His clear disdain for the inferior classes satirises the significance of social stratification in Regency England. Although today’s social stratifications may seem less severe, we all see ourselves as belonging to one class or another, and make judgements and assumptions based on this.

Austen also satirises social standing by using stereotypical characters. The infamous Bingley sisters are so attached to the idea of material wealth that they fail to realize when their comments are unacceptable. Miss Bingley is so attached to the idea that she is superior to Elizabeth in every way, that she cannot understand why Mr. Darcy could possibly find Elizabeth attractive. Her status-hungry and conceited personality is juxtaposed with the character of her brother, Mr. Charles Bingley. Unlike his sisters, he is less concerned with social climbing; instead, he shows a gentler and more level- headed side to the gentry as he falls in love with Elizabeth’s older sister, Jane. Austen’s characterisation of Mr Bingley gives us insight into her personal values.

Austen again satirizes severe class-consciousness in the character of Mr. Collins, who spends most of his time sucking up to his upper-class patron Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Though Mr. Collins offers an extreme example, he is not the only one to hold such views. Take Mr. Darcy, who believes in the dignity of his roots; Miss Bingley, who dislikes anyone not as socially accepted as she is; and Wickham, who even acts...

Find Another Essay On Pride and Prejudice - essay

Independent Novel Essay on Pride and Prejudice

762 words - 3 pages Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice “It is truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” This quote out of the novel is the very first sentence and is also one of the themes of this novel. Though it may seem like a strange theme it was actually quite good, if not great. It gave the story funny moments, unsure twists, and a type of romantic adventure that almost every girl loves

Pride and Prejudice Cultural Analysis - ISU - Essay

2516 words - 11 pages , Pemberley, Hertfordshire, and Brighton the characters takes journeys to these places base on the interest of love or the mean of finding love. Pride and Prejudice is an admirable love story that tells how the pride of one character is used against the prejudice behavior of the other based on his un-gentleman-like manner. During the 1800s, the social structure shows a lot of gender inequalities. Women and men were not equal at all; females could not work

Pride and Prejudice

1196 words - 5 pages As the novel’s title shows, pride and prejudice are some of its major themes as it shows the influences on the characters and their relationships. Pride and prejudice go hand in hand together in the novel. Pride blinds Elizabeth and Darcy to their feelings towards one another, while prejudice was shown in the characters as they would judge one another based on assumptions, not on who they really were. Darcy isolated himself from others at first

Pride and Prejudice

1921 words - 8 pages Pride and Prejudice tells a story of a young girl in the midst of a very materialistic society. Jane Austen uses the setting to dramatize the restraints women had to endure in society. As the novel develops, we see how women have to act in a way according to their gender, social class, and family lineage. Elizabeth Bennet’s sisters represent the proper societal lady while Lizzy is the rebel. Through her characters Austen shows how a women’s

Pride and Prejudice

2389 words - 10 pages Pride and Prejudice is a very complex and detailed book that illustrates dramatic love stories that develop between three girls within the Bennet family. The author of Pride and Prejudice is Jane Austen. Jane was born and raised in Steventon, England from 1775 through 1817; she was the youngest of seven children (Wikipedia). She was very tall, slender, outgoing, and much admired. She was proposed to many times, but she refused all of her

Pride and Prejudice

1152 words - 5 pages Money, either the possession or lack of it, is of tremendous importance in most aspects of our lives. This is no less the case for the characters in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. In fact, one's wealth is a significant factor in several aspects of the plot of this novel. It shapes relationships between people, influences their decisions, and even determines their hope for thefuture.The above contentions are supported from the very first

Pride and Prejudice Marxist

1091 words - 5 pages In the 19th century, reputation was everything; whether it had to do with marriage, money accounts or just how they acted in public. Mostly in Jane Austen’s novel, Pride and Prejudice, she focuses on social class, marriage and how each character acts in public. The book takes place in the 19th century England, everyone is dressed up, and making sure they always look good in public. They dress, talk and act the way that society tells them; if

Pride and Prejudice Critism

648 words - 3 pages The New Romance in Pride and PrejudicePride and Prejudice Criticism I do agree with what Susan Kneedler's criticism about Pride and Prejudice for many reasons. The first reason is during the entire novel Jane Austin does not once show any positive consequences of not marrying off to a husband. The whole novel is consisted of the respectable choice of marriage and not any of the negatives. Secondly I concur on the authors thoughts

Pride and Prejudice Analysis

942 words - 4 pages The Pride and Prejudice is an 18th century novel written by Jane Austen. Jane Austen published this book in 1813,anonymously, along with other novels. This novel contains not only important themes of love, but it also teaches the reader about social class, and how London’s society was ( Jane Austen- bio). Although Jane Austen was not a very known author of her time, her family supported her efforts in publishing her cleverly written

Pride and the Prejudice

1537 words - 6 pages “The power of doing anything with quickness is always prized much by the possessor, and often without any attention to the imperfection of the performance.” (1) Said Mr Darcy. This is one of the world's most popular novels, Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice has charmed readers since its publication of the story of the amusing Elizabeth Bennet and her relationship with the aristocrat Fitzwilliam Darcy. During this essay it will explore the

Pride and Prejudice - 729 words

729 words - 3 pages Pride and Prejudice was written by Jane Austen, she was born in 1775 and died in 1817. Austen published: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, and Emma in her life time and Northanger Abbey and Persuasion were published within a year of her death. Pride and Prejudice is a book about four marriages. Along with the four marriages, by the end of the book the readers see how the characters develop. Mr. Bennet and Mrs

Similar Essays

Pride And Prejudice Essay

1058 words - 5 pages Today in our society people normally get married for love. In other societies such as Indian and Muslim, some marriages are prearranged because of a family agreement. In Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, a major theme of the book is marriage. Characters in the book marry others for multiple reasons. The three major reasons portrayed in the book are for pecuniary reasons, social status, or for love. Mrs. Bennet, even though she isn’t getting

Essay On Prejudice And Pride In Pride And Prejudice

1569 words - 6 pages Prejudice and Pride in Pride and Prejudice          In any literary work the title and introduction make at least some allusion to the important events of the novel. With Pride and Prejudice, Austen takes this convention to the extreme, designing all of the first and some of the second half of the novel after the title and the first sentence. The concepts of pride, prejudice, and "universally acknowledged truth" (51), as well as the

Pride And Prejudice Essay: First Impressions

525 words - 2 pages First Impressions in Pride and Prejudice       First impressions are very important in Jane Austin's Pride and Prejudice. As the story develops, we discover how the prejudices and first impressions of each of the main characters change. The primary focus is on the character of Elizabeth Bennet.   Elizabeth's judgments about other characters' dispositions are accurate about half of the time.  While she is correct about Mr. Collins

Marxist Pride And Prejudice Ap English Essay

955 words - 4 pages Pride and Prejudice Marxist Theory Jane Austen lived during a time that was governed by social values where social hierarchy and class was very important. In the late 18th and early 19th century, the strong patriarchal standards had a stark effect on the women who lived at the time. This was a time when women had to marry to secure their future since the universities and professions were prohibited to them. A middle or higher-class woman