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The Social Issues Of Two Novels That I Have Studies...?

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English Essay

What do we learn about scoiety, in two novels which you have studies?

The essay that I have chosen is, what do we learn about society. The two novels that I have decided to write about are 'Pride and Prejudice' by Jane Austen and 'Great Expectations' by Charles Dickens. The thesis of my essay is the different social classes and how so much emphasis is put on the different classes and marriage, as these are the main themes in both novels.

I am going to start with the major emphasis that is put on the different social classes in both novels. We see the social differences in 'Geat Exeptations' more so than in 'Pride and Prejudice'. In 'Great Expectations' Pip first see's and experiences social snobbery when he is sent by Joe to play with Estella, Miss Havisham's adopted daughter. Miss Havisham is very wealthy and is paying for Pips apprenticeship to bacome a blacksmith if he plays with Estalle. Pip plays with Estella for eight months until his dreams end when Miss Havisham asks Pip to bring Joe to visit him. Miss Havisham gives Joe twentyfive pounds for pip's services.

When Pip sees Estella he falls in love instantly with her, Estella does not feel the same unfortuntly. Pip describes Estella as 'very pretty and seemed very proud'. Estella mocks Pip's appearance while they play and comments on his course hands and thick boots. Pip actually thinks there is something wrong with him and vows to become a gentleman.

Pip didn't have this luxury unfortuntly of becoming a gentleman and does his apprentticeship with Joe as a blacksmith. Four years into Pips apprenticeship he had a major change of luck. Someone who wished to remain anonymous has decided to pay for Pip's fees to become a solicitor. Pip finds out some time after that his sponser is actually Magwitch the escaped convect that Pip helped in the first chapter. Magwithch was so touched by Pip's generosity and vowed to give Pip any money he made. When Pip hears who his sponser is, he is out raged and thinks only of himself and of what other people might think.

While Pip is living his dream of climbing the social ladder and becoming a gentleman, he forgets about his real family and friends. Pip isn't that nice to Joe, his sisters husband, who has raised him and has been more like a friend than a father figure to Pip all his life. When Joe goes to visit Pip in London he doesn't know what to call him, Pip or Sir and calls him both. But when Pip falls ill Joe is the only one there for him and even pays off Pips dept. Joe is the only one there for him this just shows how money and being something in the social scene is not everything in life.

In 'Pride and Prejudice' it is a different story. The Bennet family are all ready high up in society, not like Pip in 'Great Expectations'. But this does not exclude Elizabeth from being subjected to social snobbery, this occures when Mr Darcy refuses to dance with Elizabeth. Elizabeth is extremely head strong and has more oppertunities in the novel unlike most of her friends. The opening line in the novel is 'The truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want if a wife'. We then see how this is true, first when Mr Collins comes and asks Elizabeth to marry him and she declines his off, as she believes a person shouls only marry for love not money. Elizabeth's friend Charlotte does not have thins luxuary and when Mr Collins askes her to marry him she accepts for financial security, not love.

Society plays a major role in both novels. Marriage has a major effect on society at this time as we see Mrs Bennet doing her best to marry off her kids to eligible bachelors that can support them, we see marriage in Pride and Prejudice more than in Great expectations.

In 'Great Expectations' Pip changes his life, so some day he might have a chance to marry Estella. But Estella has been brought up to be incapible of loving anyone after Miss havishams missfortune in love when she was left att he alter by the man she loved many years before. Estella tells Pip this. That she is in capable of loving anyone. Pip is heart broken when he hears of Estella's marriage Drummle even thought Estella had told Pip in Statis House where she was raised by Miss Havisham, that she would be soon married

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