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Anxieties for Pip in Great Expectations

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Anxieties for Pip in Great Expectations

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  • Feb. 13, 2013
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What new anxieties does Pip experience during volume 2 (pp. 190–231) and how does Dickens present these episodes?

Pip starts to experience many new anxieties during volume 2, and finds that he does not have the experiences that he would have imagined in London. In volume 2, he spirals into debt and Dickens shows this by creating small co incidences and complexities in the plot, which Pip fails to deal with. This makes the story interesting for us as the reader, and adds unpredictability, but adds more complexities to the story for Pip, for example, the fact the Orlick keeps cropping up in volume two suggest that he will be a problem for Pip in the coming chapters.

An anxiety Pip faces is his worry towards his father figure in London, Mr Jaggers. Pip begins to learn during volume two that Jaggers is a formidable and scary lawyer, and this makes Pip think that Jaggers is a hard man to trust. Jaggers tries to get through Pip, by using Bentley Drummle, which upraises another anxiety for Pip, as he does like Bentley Drummle. As it says ' Through all his stages, Mr Jaggers followed him with the same strange interest'. The fact that Pip says 'same strange interest', shows that he is getting suspicious about Jaggers, and finds him quite 'strange'. As well as this, the fact that Jaggers tells Pip to 'keep as clear of' Drummle as he can foreshadows the fact that Drummle will cause trouble for Pip in the near future. Dickens also uses symbolism to try and make Jaggers an anxiety for Pip as he is constantly washing his hands, which symbolises his conscience. He wants to wash away crime and dishonesty that he is constantly in contact with. This symbolism makes us realise that Dickens is trying to suggest that all of the upper class are corrupt, and Pip should realise that as well. Moreover, Pip realises Mr Jaggers' power when Dickens says 'making the legs of the old gentleman … quite convulsive under the table'. This suggests that no one can stand in Jaggers' way when...