Main Themes in Pride and Prejudice

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This passage is taken from Darcy’s letter to Elizabeth. One of the main themes that Austen is trying to convey through this passage is to avoid judging people and their actions superficially by the revealing of truth and motives through the setting of the letter where Darcy seek to explain himself and seek Elizabeth’s understanding. We can see Darcy’s attempt when he wrote “I shall hope to be secured in future, when the following account of my actions and their motives has been read.” (150-151, Pride and Prejudice) His justification and explanation is vital in the story as it will lead to the turning point in the novel where Elizabeth realized the reasons behind his actions which she accused him of and changed her opinion and attitude towards him. This allows Elizabeth as well as the readers to look beyond the actions of Darcy persuading Bingley not to pursue Jane and understanding his motives and reasons.

The above theme is also demonstrated by Darcy’s assumption of Jane’s indifference towards Mr Bingley based on his few observations of her where “she received his attention with pleasure, she did not invite them by any participation of sentiment” (151, Pride and Prejudice). Demonstrating the superficial judgments so easily passed by the people of that society. Yet Elizabeth’s knowledge of Jane did confirm to some extent the justice of his assumptions when she admitted that “Jane’s feelings, though fervent, were little displayed”. This was foreshadowed earlier in the novel when Charlotte advised against the concealing of affection which may lead to losing the opportunity of securing a man.

Another theme of the letter is how love can transcends the prejudice held towards lower social classes by the aristocracy. The prejudiced reluctance of the upper classes in allowing the middle classes to marry into their families is evident in the novel as well as in Darcy’s letter when he said” the want of connection could not be so great an evil to my...
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