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Gender Roles and Marriage in Pride and Prejudice

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Daniel Geleroff

on 22 September 2014

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Transcript of Gender Roles and Marriage in Pride and Prejudice

Gender Roles and Marriage in
Pride and Prejudice

Through Mrs. Bennet's eyes (society):
Through Elizabeth's eyes:
" You shall not, for the sake of one individual, change the meaning of principle of integrity... that selfishness is prudence, and insensibility of danger, security for happiness" (Austen, 93).

"I am only resolved to act in that manner, which will, in my opinion, constitute my happiness, without reference to any person..." (Austen, 241).

Elizabeth contrasts societal
norms. She shows how people
should make their own choices;
create their own definition of
love and happiness.

You see through the body language of the man and the woman that they are a married couple who have lost interest in each other or maybe never had an interest in each other
Marriage was a negotiation or business deal during this time
The role of the woman during this period was to care for the children and make sure the man is happy
Theme: Marriage and Gender Roles
"It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife"-Narrator
(Austen, 1).
What is the best kind of marriage?
How would Mrs. Bennet feel about the first line in the novel (the previously mentioned quote)?
In comparison to the painting we saw in class, do these paintings reveal an aspect of the male gender role? How?

"The business of her life was to get her daughters married; its solace was visiting and news" (Austen, 3).

"A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment" (Austen, 18).

These quotes solidify
gender roles in marriage,
portraying women as
people who do not truly love
before marriage.

Lydia's Diary
Characters Who Challenge the Ideals
Today as I was walking to my aunt's, Mrs. Philips, home the most splendid thing occurred! The troops had been in town and I saw the most
handsome Mr. Wickham! Oh I've cared for him since he was interested in Lizzy! With his most suitable countenance and most amiable
behavior, he certainly is charming. But what is most exciting is that his regiment will be at
pound or a million in his possession, I love him and I plan to marry him either way. I will not regard my family's condemnation, that I know will be
concerning my imprudence. Let me be imprudent, as love is the biggest fortune a man could have for me. I don't care what my mother has planned for my future, I shall do as I please.
Brighton when I go with Mr and Mrs. Forester. Mama and father said I could go. I plan on running away with Mr. Wickham. I don't care if he hasn't a
I have all the
money I need,
hmm now i need
a wife!
Dear Mother,

I will not marry Mr. Collins, look at him, he posses none of the qualities I want in a husband. Just a few days ago you saw him as ridiculous as I did, and now suddenly he is a man worth me marrying. It would be foolish of me to marry him. If he wants a wife to have around the house and not say a word of what is in her mind, I can promise you I will not do that. You can be upset at me all you want and never to speak to me if that is what you desire, I assure you Lydia or Kitty will be able to give you what you want.

Yours truly,
Mrs. Bennet vs. Elizabeth


Daniel Geleroff
Hannah Hiraki
Emily Bortnik

Jane Austen portrays the subservient and reliant nature of women in Pride and Prejudice through marriage. Women cannot provide for themselves, thus they
look for a wealthy groom to do so for them. Austen shows that women are expected to marry for avarice, not love.
Are there any other characters that challenge the conceived ideals?

Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen

The reform of "clandestine marriage"
by Jennifer M. Payne

Full transcript