Great Expectations Essay

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Amanda 1 Honors English, P.2, T2

3 January 2013
Great Expectations Essay

When an individual loves someone else, it is difficult to let the person go or accept his/her return, because of the poor decision that one person made to leave his/her loved one. However, since the person already left, is it worth the pain and agony in the end to accept that person into the hurt individual’s life once again? In his Victorian Literature novel, Charles Dickens satirizes the Victorian Era multiple times within Great Expectations. For example, in the 1800’s the masculine class were the regulators of the family and weren’t aggravated by women, but in this novel the females obtain the upper position, like how Mrs. Joe overpowers Orlick. Charles Dickens named the novel Great Expectations, because its means that an individual is positive that something significant will occur with no warning if the individual wants it bad enough, but in English Victorian society, achieving expectations meant that someone was destined to collect vast sums of riches and success. Throughout Pips three stages in the novel Great Expectations, Charles Dickens utilizes the character of Joe, who out of compassion and sympathy demonstrates that suffering is a sacrifice one is willing to endure for the love of another individual, and how this idea changes what Pip’s views, personality, and values are at the end of his high expectations.

During Pip’s first stage of expectations, Joe explicates that he suffers greatly because of Orlick, Mrs. Joe and Pip, but only wishes to steer Pip in the right direction and to have given enough ‘love’ to change Pip’s views and expectations. First, Orlick takes Joe by surprise when he starts to get angry and jealous of Pip and tells him “No favoring in this shop. Be a man!"(15.65), but because Joe wants no trouble he lets him have the day off which makes Mrs. Joe terribly angry. Additionally, when Orlick offends Mrs. Joe, Joe defends her even though she was mad at him, because he loves her and is willing to suffer through Orlicks harsh words. Pip’s troublesome behavior at the table is brought to attention when Joe states, “You and me is always friends, and I'd be the last to tell upon you, any time...But such as a most uncommon bolt as that!”(2.8) Pip’s actions got Joe in trouble while he was trying to help Pip, because the helpful advice made Joe ignore Mrs. Joe and which made him have to face consequences such as being “pounced on” and “knocked [in] his head for a little while against the wall behind him” (2.8). Also, it expresses how Joe dealt with Mrs. Joe’s and Pip’s spiteful behavior all because he cared for them and was compassionate to all people. Pip’s behavior shows readers that as a child he didn’t have any expectations but eventually set the bar higher which was not what Joe truly wanted to happen. This helps readers understand how having sympathy and a good heart doesn’t always payoff at first, but latter lets people become the best of friends in the long run, like Pip and Joe. While sitting by the warm fire at night Joe explains to Pip that “When [he] got acquainted with his sister, it were the talk how she was bringing him up by hand…. [And] how small and flabby and mean he was…” and how he “…would have formed the most contemptible opinion of himself self!” (7.38) which makes Pip start to cry because he felt ashamed by how he acted, but grateful that Mrs. Joe and Joe stayed with him. At that time Pip, a commoner, didn’t care about anyone and just wanted to do what he wanted, although it made him look bad and unkind. In the long run Pip’s disobedient attitude and Joe’s loving heart was worth it because he and Joe became best friends which was held together by a strong bond of love. Lastly, Joe was affectionate and loving towards...
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