Pride and Prejudice

Author: Jane Austen

Author's Purpose

In this time period, women and marriage were basically thought of as political and economical pawns to increase a family's wealth and prosperity. Jane Austen's purpose is made known through her novel that women do not have to live life without love anymore; they can choose love over all. There may be trials as there were in Pride and Prejudice, she does not hide the bad, but when all things were said and done, the family came out successful with the love both Jane and Elizabeth dreamt of.

Mrs. Bennet Subjecting Her Daughters to Mr. Bingley

The very first sentence in the book states, "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife" (5). This may seem quite innocent at first, but further into the chapter it shows that Mrs. Bennet does not think innocently at all. When she caught air that one wealthy young gentleman like Mr. Bingley would be moving in close to their establishment, she went to work right away matchmaking her daughters to him. It was in the favor of Jane that caught Bingley's attention, and with him being a charming fellow, he captured the heart of Jane immediately.

Mr. Collins throwing himself at Elizabeth with the help of her mother

Mr. Collins is portrayed as a wealthy, thriving kiss-up to a wealthy old woman. He is the one who will be taking over the Bennet's estate when Mr. Bennet dies, making Mr. Collins a necessary pawn to marry to keep the estate after Mr. Bennet's death. Knowing this, Mrs. Bennet does everything in her power to make Elizabeth marry her annoying cousin including threats of "never seeing her again" (111). When it came down to it, the plan fell through and the estate was lost, making Mrs. Bennet's nerves worse than ever before.

Charlotte's Reasoning for Marriage

Charlotte was not a girl driven by love, but too consumed by her upbringings and social status to know any different. For when she found the opportunity to settle with a well-off man, she chose it immediately. In the text it shows Miss Lucas' thoughts as they say, "Without thinking highly of either men or matrimony, marriage had always been her object: it was the only honorable provision for well-educated young women of small fortune, and, however uncertain of giving happiness, must be their pleasantest preservative from want" (122). As just stated, Miss Lucas' reasonings behind her marriage to Mr. Collins was almost clinical, detached, due to her situation in life.

Mr. Darcy's Reluctant Proposal

The social classes of this time did not intermingle, for that was improper. Mr. Darcy, for instance, was in the highest class and was reserved for women such as Miss Bingley. The only problem was that his heart thought differently and saw no social barriers, making him fall in love with the lower-level Elizabeth. In the book, Austen makes it known of Mr. Darcy's struggle with himself as he proposes marriage to Elizabeth in the most uncivil of ways possible; After his proposal, Elizabeth said, "Why, with so evident a design of offending and insulting me, you chose to tell me that you liked me against your will, against your reason, and even against your character" (189)?

Pride and Prejudice, the value of family

There seems to be death by relation in the book Pride and Prejudice as the main character, Elizabeth Bennet, struggles with herself, her status, and her family. For her antisocial father and outrageous mother combined to make a mess of five children, all of which were opposite. These obstacles were found throughout the book as Elizabeth and her older sister, Jane, struggled to find a suitable husband to protect them from their destined exile from their estate.

As the family were living semi-peacefully in their home, a gentleman of great wealth, Mr. Bingley, came with his entourage to buy an estate in the area. Of course, this put Mrs. Bennet into a tailspin of needless worries and planning, trying to get her daughters looked upon by the suitor and his pompous friend, Mr. Darcy. Jane captured the eye of Mr. Bingley and their romance went from there, but for Elizabeth, she was betrothed for a time to her long-winded cousin, Mr. Collins. This, however, fell through and he married her neighbor instead.

As a result of the fact Mr. Collins married Elizabeth's best friend, Elizabeth visited Mrs. Collins for the winter. While there, she encountered Mr. Darcy, whom she was not fond of at first. After the letter he gave her though, her thoughts of him changed drastically, as she was in the wrong for being prejudice against him.

Just upon her return home, Elizabeth finds herself at a loss as she tries to keep her youngest sister Lydia at home instead of swooning over officers with her friend in Brighton. With the affair between Lydia and the wicked officer Mr. Wickham at a climax, Mr. Darcy comes in to effect their marriage, putting Elizabeth and her family at ease. With Mr. Darcy's presence, all comes together as Jane marries Mr. Bingley and Elizabeth marries Mr. Darcy.