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Theme of Pride and Prejudice

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luis velasquez

on 6 November 2014

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Transcript of Theme of Pride and Prejudice

Marriage should be a deep intimate relationship between two individuals with a foundation based on love that transcends prejudice and ignores one's own pride
Exemplified in the form of Darcy and Elizabeth
Though romanticized to an extent, the evolving relationship of Darcy and Elizabeth is ultimately what Austen is portraying
Darcy and Elizabeth's relationship emphasized by other terrible marriages
I.e.(Wickham/Lydia, Collins/Charlotte, Mr. and Mrs. Bennet)
Social Conventions
"Pride" and "Prejudice" in
Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen

Structure of "Pride" and "Prejudice" Throughout the Novel
What Are Pride and Prejudice?
Characters with Pride and Prejudice
Analysis of Title
Jane Austen chose this title over her previous choice
First Impressions
First Impressions
the purpose is straightforward when taking the characters' examples as they focus on the behavior and outward appearance of others
With 'pride' and 'prejudice' in the title it instead has the reader interpret which characters reveal the terms
pride and prejudice is done in the privacy of thoughts and the novel named this puts readers in the characters' thoughts seeing how they make decisions and what their value systems are based on
Summary/Theme Relation
Social Class
Rising action- At a Ball Elizabeth is rejected to be danced with by Mr. Darcy sparking a conflict based on pride and prejudice that would intensify throughout the novel
Climax- Elizabeth realizes the error in her approach and outlook on Darcy giving her a whole new perception on her surroundings
Falling action- Elizabeth realizes how much she loves Darcy
Resolution- Elizabeth and Darcy get married
Elizabeth Bennet
William Collins
Fitzwilliam Darcy
Relation to Austen's Purpose
The title
Pride and Prejudice
is fitting and points to the theme of the novel as it goes beyond a mere statement of first impressions and explores in depth the abstract qualities of pride and prejudice.
The themes are worked out not only through the characters of Darcy and Elizabeth but also through various minor characters. It is a title which does complete justice to the theme and subject of the novel.
Darcy's opinions of Elizabeth change as he realizes that he is infatuated with her strong views and perspectives. He admits his faults and overcomes the prideful nature he boasted.

Elizabeth has a change in mind towards Darcy as she realizes the truth after reading his letter and understanding information before making assumptions with his interference of the relationship between Bingley and Jane.
Having high opinion of one's own worth [(+/-) Connotation]
Judging others without fact or legitimate experience
The terms "pride" and "prejudice" are pivotal to Jane Austen's novel of the same name because of the impact and great influence both terms serve to the structure, context of the title, and central characters
What joins all these three aspects is ultimately three central themes
Lady Catherine de Bourgh
George Wickham
"How despicably I have acted!" she cried; "I, who have prided myself on my discernment! I, who have valued myself on my abilities! who have often disdained the generous candour of my sister, and gratified my vanity in useless or blameable mistrust! How humiliating is this discovery! Yet, how just a humiliation! Had I been in love, I could not have been more wretchedly blind! But vanity, not love, has been my folly. Pleased with the preference of one, and offended by the neglect of the other, on the very beginning of our acquaintance, I have courted prepossession and ignorance, and driven reason away, where either were concerned. Till this moment I never knew myself." (36.18-19)
"I was given good principles, but left to follow them in pride and conceit."
"You have no regard, then, for the honour and credit of my nephew! Unfeeling, selfish girl! Do you not consider that a connection with you must disgrace him in the eyes of everybody?[…] You are then resolved to have him?"
"My situation in life, my connections with the family of de Bourgh, and my relationship to your own, are circumstances highly in my favour; and you should take it into further consideration, that in spite of your manifold attractions, it is by no means certain that another offer of marriage may ever be made you. Your portion is unhappily so small that it will in all likelihood undo the effects of your loveliness and amiable qualifications. As I must therefore conclude that you are not serious in your rejection of me, I shall choose to attribute it to your wish of increasing my love by suspense, according to the usual practice of elegant females."
Social Conventions
Social conventions(norms)- what is expected and accepted by the society you live in (marriage to wealth)
Society is a hostile game of win or lose that for the most part non-conformity could result in a multitude of punishments from alienation to poverty
Most prominent example found in Charlotte(mentally prepared)
Charlotte marries Mr. Collins because she understands that if she misses this opportunity it could mean a long poor life with her family
The title is centered around the relationship of the primary characters. Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth move past the roles fixed for them to acquire insight and understanding over pride and prejudice. They do still experience some pride and some prejudice, but unlike others they are able to overcome it as they develop throughout the novel.
- Confidence in ones own abilities
- High self-esteem
Mrs. Bennet hopes for Mr. Bingley to take an interest in one of her daughters
-It is understood to have the daughters marry a wealthy man that would keep them stable and live up to the standards of society
-Mrs. Bennet wished to have boys to inherit their money
Mr. Collins and Lady Catherine de Bourgh gloat about their wealth and their valuable objects
The refusal of Lady Catherine or Miss Bingley to acknowledge that Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth could marry due to their different social status
- Discrimination
- Subjecting others to a lower stature
The terms "pride" and "prejudice" are vital to the central plot, social class system, and character interactions of the novel because they reveal the structure of the literary work
Elizabeth judges Mr. Darcy's character after feeling insulted at the Ball
Mr. Collins repeatedly praises the wealth of his superior, Lady de Bourgh
Mrs. Bennet's reputation for her children
Elizabeth's misinterpretation of Mr. Wickham's true character
Miss Bingley's judgement and insults towards Elizabeth's social status
"On page after page, Austen shows that objects, events, and people's behavior look different when they are viewed from different vantage points" (Folsom 101).
"But it is not merely this affair," she continued, "on which my dislike is founded. Long before it had taken place, my opinion of you was decided. Your character was unfolded in the recital which I received many months ago from Mr. Wickham. On this subject, what can you have to say? In what imaginary act of friendship can you here defend yourself? or under what misrepresentation, can you here impose upon others" (Austen, vol. 2 ch. 11)
``In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.''

Elizabeth's astonishment was beyond expression. She stared, coloured, doubted, and was silent. This he considered sufficient encouragement, and the avowal of all that he felt and had long felt for her immediately followed. He spoke well, but there were feelings besides those of the heart to be detailed, and he was not more eloquent on the subject of tenderness than of pride. His sense of her inferiority -- of its being a degradation -- of the family obstacles which judgment had always opposed to inclination, were dwelt on with a warmth which seemed due to the consequence he was wounding, but was very unlikely to recommend his suit.
Work Cited
Austen, Jane.
Pride and Prejudice
. New York, Modern
Library. 1995. Print.
Folsom, Marcia McClintock. "Approaches to Teaching
Pride and Prejudice
''Taking Different Positions': Knowing and Feeling in
Pride and Prejudice
.'" New York, 1993. Print.
Jennifer, Regina. "Universal Themes and Jane Austen:First
Pride and Prejudice
Title Analysis. 20 Sept. 2012. Web. 30 Oct. 2014.

“He generously imputed the whole of his mistaken pride, and confessed that he had before thought it beneath him, to lay his private actions open to the world. His character was to speak for itself.”
Reputation is pivotal to long term social survival that if smeared or destroyed leads to social rejection and prejudice
Can be seen with Mrs. Bennet with the elopement of Wickham and Lydia (nervous at first but relieved later)
Lady Catherine de Bourgh and her verbal insults towards Elizabeth
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