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Choose one of the prompts below.

Research the topic, using at least five directly quoted sources with no more than three from web sources.

Prompt choices:

  1. Examine attitudes towards money held by various characters in the novel.
  2. Identify three solid uses of irony in the novel.
  3. Examine falseness in the novel.
  4. Study three letters in the novel in light of theories that it originated as an epistolary novel.
  5. Identify the power of nature in this novel.

Background of Pride and Prejudice and its significance for understanding Victorian society

Jane Austen was one of the most prominent female novelists of the nineteenth century, who in her novel Pride and Prejudice charts the fascination of the Victorian society towards money and marriage. These two factors played an interlinked role in the novel as it was common for the women of the time to choose their marital partner based on the monetary standing the man had. The novel describers the most powerful and exhilarating extension, which has made a strong foundation of being recognized as one of her best since it was published (Pei et al.). The novel shows how owing to the lack of financial independence, most of the Bennet sisters as well as the women of the Victorian society tried to climb the social ladder with the help of marriage with wealthy men of the society.  The aim of this essay is to highlight that although love and marriage are significantly important themes in the novel, marriage in the entire novel revolves around the concept of money, and most of the characters get involved in romantic relationships mostly because of their obsession with money, social status and wealthy lifestyle.

The background of Pride and Prejudice is important as it gives an idea about the understanding of the Victorian society and their obsession for money in matters of love and marriage. In the introductory line of the novel, the main theme has been have been said which states that it is a universally accepted fact that every wealthy man must possess a wife to sustain (Murphy). The very novel revolves around the concept that is very different from the modern era where love holds a pivotal role in marriage. However, the idea was to trade beauty for money.  In this manner, the plots which appeared to be sentimental ended up being unexpected (Milli, Smitha, and Bamman).

The novel breaks down the four kinds of relational unions and the idea of adoration and marriage in Pride and Prejudice. What can be concluded from the novel is that: the most imperative figure in the novel is Elizabeth as she is one of the few figures depicted at that time who is not drawn towards monetary needs in marriage. The optional figures are Mr. and Mrs. Bennet, Darcy, Lydia, Jane and Collins; the unimportant figures are Lady Catherine, Wickham and Bingley. As explained previously, there are four kinds of marriage in the context of the novel: Collins and Charlotte's marriage, Lydia and Wickham's marriage, Jane and Mr. Bingley's marriage, and in addition Darcy and Elizabeth's marriage. In Pride and Prejudice, the initial segment deals with the marriage of Charlotte and Collins, their marriage is fortunate and has characteristic feature of the Victorian era. Charlotte is a girl who dreamt of having a rich husband and which she found in Mr. Collins in spite of him being an epitome of male hierarchy. Elizabeth, being a friend to Charlotte, criticized her marriage to Collins with her witty and intellectual remarks but the circumstances of the novel shows the normalcy of marriage between a rich man and a wealth-seeking woman. Elizabeth's story is a work of sentimental fiction, yet Charlotte's is a reflection of reality. Despite the fact that Elizabeth can't comprehend Charlotte's purposes behind wedding to Mr. Collins, she respects Charlotte's sound administration of her family unit and her capacity to see as meager of Mr. Collins as would be prudent (Reena). Though Elizabeth's association with Darcy was what Austen's female peruses may dream of, Charlotte's marriage to Mr. Collins was the genuine life they would probably need to confront. Charlotte trusts that similarity of identity involves possibility; however, she perceives that she wants a marriage of monetary benefits and comforts rather than gambling a marriage looking for camaraderie, as Elizabeth wants. In any case, Elizabeth, the courageous woman of the novel, passes on the chance to make the sheltered match her companion acknowledges, and by holding out gets the chance to wed a man who is both wealthier and more alluring than Mr. Collins (Ganjoo). Nevertheless, the society as well the readers of the Victorian era saw no error in the marital union between Charlotte and Collins which was only based on monetary benefits and standing in the society. The second kind of marriage is Lydia and Wickham's marriage that is enthusiastic and youthful in light of the fact that their adoration depends on pleasure and vanity. Lydia is the Bennet daughter who resembles her mother Mrs. Bennet in her thought process and thinks that money is the sole benefactor in a martial union. Lydia's bad conduct originates from an absence of parental supervision on the parts of both her mom and dad. Her marriage to Wickham speaks to a relationship that depends on physical satisfaction (Jansson). Lydia does not think, she essentially follows up on her motivations, and that hastiness, joined with careless guardians, prompts her close demolish. An enchanting and articulate young fellow, Wickham utilizes his magnetism to suggest himself into the lives of others. His conduct all through the novel shows him to be a card shark that has no second thoughts about running up his obligations and after that fleeing. Mrs. Gardiner, who remarks on his sudden enthusiasm for Miss King, first notes his hired soldier nature in regards to women. Like Elizabeth, he has a capacity to peruse individuals; in any case, he utilizes this learning further bolstering his good fortune. When he finds that Elizabeth loathes Darcy, for instance, he profits by her abhorrence to pick up her sensitivities. The marriage of Lydia and Wickham is based on both physical desires and monetary benefits without any mental connection that ultimately lead to their short-term relationship. The eldest and loveliest of the Bennet daughters, Jane has a decent heart and a delicate nature (Grayson et al.). As Elizabeth's friend, Jane keeps her sister's inclination to be judgmental in line by offering positive elucidations of negative circumstances. Jane's need to see the best in everyone can sometimes turn outrageous on occasions, like her skepticism about Wickham that he could be a liar. Yet she is not always sure of her assessment about others like in the case of Caroline Bingley. At the point when Jane finally perceives Miss Bingley's deviousness, she quits rationalizing her and does not seek after the kinship. Notwithstanding, when she and Miss Bingley moved towards becoming sisters-in-law, Jane's amiable attitude motivates her to get Miss Bingley's cordial suggestions with more responsiveness than Miss Bingley deserves (Rubinstein). The marriage of Jane and Mr. Bingley is a union of love wrapped in monetary benefits.

Four types of marriages in the novel

Finally, the main theme of the novel, the fourth marriage concerning Darcy and Elizabeth is evaluated. Pride and Prejudice flourishes with cases of despondent relational unions, yet Elizabeth finds a reason adequate to actuate her to marriage. Despite the fact that Elizabeth Bennet does not have an exceptionally positive perspective of marriage toward the start of the novel, she perceives that she needs to wed since she is not freely affluent. The kind of mental development Elizabeth faces states the helplessness of the women of the Victorian era and their need to get marriage just for earning financial security and social acceptability.  Elizabeth is stunned when she hears that Charlotte Lucas has chosen to wed Mr. Collins, despite the fact that she scarcely knows him, however her companion makes the best out of a shocking circumstance (Setiyawati). It is even more shocking to learn the perspective of Charlotte that she never believes in the system of being happily married and preferred to have a financial standing with an unknown man for the rest of her life. Mr. Bennet is extremely baffled in his decision of life partner, which is a factor in his pessimistic point of view on the world. His views completely differ from his wives whose business of life was to get her daughters married. The views of Mrs. Bennet may seem irrelevant in the context of present times but held value in the era. Her constant efforts in presenting Jane as a perfect match to Bingley and picturing Collins as a match for Elizabeth confirms her sole purpose in life. She even applauds the fact that Charlotte has entered in martial relation with a man just for the sake of monetary benefits and not love. She even acknowledges Charlotte’s views that getting married to Collins was just out of sheer motivation to get a respectable position in the society and receive the wealth she always wanted to possess and nothing to do with love or mental bonding. It is conceivable to see that Austen is pushing in Pride and Prejudice that bliss in any condition, wedded or single, involves the monetary benefits from the partner. (Lu, Lili, and Zhao).

During the Victorian era, relationships were solely based on money and had nothing to do with love or any sort of sentiments. This stereotyping of relationships was primarily because of the way in which both the genders were treated by the society as well family. Females were always taught skills that can make them an ideal wife to their rich husbands. They were supposed to be subordinates to men in every respect and were treated so right from their very childhood. They were not given any access to proper education and knowledge and only learnt skills that can enhance their feminine qualities. As said by Darcy, it was necessary for women of the Victorian age to possess certain qualities that made them an ideal match for their grooms. No traces of freedom were assigned to them including their freedom to speak their minds and even inherit property from their paternal homes. The expectations, though seem unrealistic in the modern era had certain relevance in that age just like the complete association of money with marriage. The characters of the novel tied the knot just based on social standing of their husbands and not by love or mental compatibility. Every marriage in the novel is directly or indirectly associated with the concept of money that clearly symbolize the fascination of the society with monetary benefits. Even the female counterparts had no way to express their believes and ideology. They only wanted to please at the social gatherings that is evident at the gestures of Ms. Bingley in order to please Darcy. The idea of perfect man with a wealthy background and a woman with all the desirable qualities to be the ideal wife makes the novel a perfect example of a Victorian literature that has less emotion attached to the concept of martial union and more of wealth related.

Charlotte and Collins' Marriage

From the above discussion, it can be concluded that the novel focuses on the enchantment of Victorian society with money and its association with the concept of marriage. Every marriage pictured in the novel is based on monetary gains either directly or indirectly. Pride and Prejudice is a novel that deals with the marriage of a number of female characters based on the social standing of their husbands. The novel starts with the marriage of Charlotte and Collins and ends with the union of Darcy and Elizabeth. All the relations are somewhat related to the concept that money plays a forefront role in determining the nuptial bonds. Jane Austen that shows the falseness of relations in the Victorian period and the superficial standings of men and women has presented the novel ironically. A standout amongst the most enduringly prominent books in the entire of English writing, it has been perused for these reasons. What's more, movie producers and additionally faultfinders have reacted contrastingly to the sentimental and unexpected elective readings (Siddika and Khaton). Marriage should not be concerned with only monetary benefits though money does play an important role in sustenance. The interlinked role of money and marriage in the novel clearly signifies the lack of education of the era especially for females. Right from their birth, they were just taught to be perfect wives doing all the household chores and learning all the qualities that can make them desirable by the most handsome and rich gentlemen. They even went to social gatherings to display their worth as a perfect bride to be. The novel has clear indications that can relate the concept of money and marriage and so from the discussion it can be concluded that in the Victorian society, money and marriage were interlinked. Their sole objective of getting married was to enjoy the wealth that their husbands possess and also to demonstrate excellent qualities as a respectable lady in the society.

References

Beijerinck, H. C. W. "Pride and prejudice." Europhysics News45.3 (2014): 26-26.

Ganjoo, Pomposh. "Women and Marriage: Study of Pride and Prejudice and A Suitable Boy." The Criterion: An International Journal in English 4 (2013): 1-8.

Gao, Haiyan. "Jane Austen's ideal man in Pride and Prejudice." Theory and Practice in Language Studies 3.2 (2013): 384.

Grayson, Siobhán, et al. "The sense and sensibility of different sliding windows in constructing co-occurrence networks from literature." International Workshop on Computational History and Data-Driven Humanities. Springer, Cham, 2016.

He, Hua, Denilson Barbosa, and Grzegorz Kondrak. "Identification of speakers in novels." Proceedings of the 51st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers). Vol. 1. 2013.

Jansson, Julia. "Pride and prejudice." (2017).

Lu, Lili, and Youbin Zhao. "A Feminist Analysis of Jane Eyre & Pride and Prejudice." International Conference on Humanities and Social Science Research. 2015.

Malmquist, Anna. "Pride and Prejudice." Lesbian families in contemporary Sweden (2015).

Milli, Smitha, and David Bamman. "Beyond canonical texts: A computational analysis of fanfiction." Proceedings of the 2016 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing. 2016.

Morris, Jenny. Pride against prejudice: Transforming attitudes to disability. The Women's Press, 2014.

Murphy, Olivia. Jane Austen the Reader: The Artist as Critic. Springer, 2013.

Pei, Feifei, Changle Fu, and Xiaolin Huang. "Jane Austen’s Views on Marriage in Pride and Prejudice." Advances in Literary Study 2.04 (2014): 147.

Reena, Reena. "Women in Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice." Journal of Literature, Culture and Media Studies 4.7 & 8 (2013).

Rinaldi, Sergio, Fabio Della Rossa, and Pietro Landi. "A mathematical model of ‘Pride and Prejudice’." Nonlinear Dynamics in Psychology and Life Sciences 18 (2014): 199-211.

Rubinstein, Yona, and Dror Brenner. "Pride and prejudice: using ethnic-sounding names and inter-ethnic marriages to identify labour market discrimination." Review of Economic Studies 81.1 (2013): 389-425.

Setiyawati, Vima. Power Of Love In Pride And Prejudice By Jane Austen (1813): A Psychoanalytic Approach. Diss. Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta, 2013.

Siddika, Mahmoda Khaton. "The Metamorphosis of Normative Feminism in Pride and Prejudice as Descriptive Feminism in Beloved: Inevitable Path of a Woman." Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences 4.13 (2013): 425.

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