One of the Weaknesses of the N

Topics: Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth Bennet, Jane Austen Pages: 3 (872 words) Published: October 8, 1999
One of the weaknesses of the novel, Pride and Prejudice is that the characters are divided up between those you like and those you don't. Discuss.
The characters found in the novel, Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, are easily contrasted. While some characters are likeable, we have others who are seen as silly and petty. Thus, we have strong differences between the various characters, who present to us the nature of society in those times. The reflection of the 19th Century through the characters, does not detract from the novel in any way, but actually increases its complexity.

Elizabeth, is clearly one of the most likeable characters in the novel. With her wit, charm and charisma she is in all senses an ‘accomplished woman'. Elizabeth is a strong-minded and courageous character, who was not afraid to stand up to others. " I felt that you were the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.", (Ch. 34) she exclaims in response to Darcy's initial proposal. However, with all her strong-mindedness, her courage is still shown when she admits that she is wrong after she read Darcy's letter of explanation and said: "But vanity, not love, has been my folly." Through this realisation, we see that Elizabeth does not have the stereotypical nature of the majority of the people in her society, who, in contrast are unable to recognise their own faults.

Vastly contrasted to Elizabeth, we have the comical Mr.Collins, who lacks the self-reflection and self-awareness that is evident in Elizabeth. One trait Mr. Collins surely portrays is that of self-importance. It never occurred to him that Elizabeth would refuse his marriage proposal, and when she does, he can only say: "…it does not appear to me that my hand is unworthy your acceptance…". Mr Collins' proposal was extremely serious, as he really believed that he was a good catch, and therefore he was mortified when Elizabeth turned him down. Mr.Collins continually amuses the reader...
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