Pride and Prejudice, written by the very talented Jane Austen, tells the story of the many conflicts involved with finding love. The story begins with Mr. and Mrs. Bennet, the parents of five young women, discussing that a young man named Mr. Bingley has just purchased Netherfield, a home not far from theirs. Mrs. Bennet is overjoyed to hear such great news. She instantly imagines that this rich man is bound to marry one of her daughters. As the story progresses, Mrs. Bennet becomes increasingly assertive in her quest to have all of her children married off. Her daughters attend many balls and meet many men throughout the story’s plot, some of which include Mr. Bingley, Darcy, Mr. Collins and Mr. Wickham. Jane, the oldest daughter likes Mr. Bingley and he seems to really like her too. On the other hand, Elizabeth (the second oldest) meets Darcy and instantly finds him unbearable and arrogant, when he refuses to dance with her at a ball. Things start to change though as the story progresses and Darcy proposes to Elizabeth, only for her to reject him. This incident makes Mrs. Bennet furious because one of her daughters had the chance to get married, but instead turned him down. While Elizabeth is out of town visiting Darcy, she receives a letter stating that her youngest sister, Lydia, has eloped with Mr. Wickham. This news shocks everyone so Elizabeth apologizes to Darcy for leaving so quickly and then returns home. No one can find Lydia which causes the whole family anxiety because they know that if the two don’t have an official wedding the entire family’s reputation could be ruined. Luckily they are able to find Lydia and Wickham, but Wickham agrees to the marriage only if the Bennets will provide him with a small income in return. They quickly agree and Lydia marries Mr. Wickham soon afterward. Next, Mr. Bingley finally asks Jane to marry him and they soon marry, which pleases the whole family. Darcy comes to visit often, and Elizabeth finds out that Darcy is the one who found her sister and paid Wickham. This news, coupled with Elizabeth’s gradual change in feelings toward Darcy, leads Darcy to ask for Elizabeth’s hand in marriage and this time, she accepts it. Love conquered Darcy’s pride in social status, while love also proves more important than Elizabeth’s prejudice.
1. In the novel, marriage was extremely important because women were looked down upon after a certain age if they were unable to find a gentleman to marry. Women were couldn't inherit anything, therefore; women were completely dependent on men. Do you think that this way of living is more difficult than what women face today?
2. Mrs. Bennet is very critical of her daughter's choices of whom they should marry, to the point where they were practically forcing Jane to marry Mr. Bingley. Do you think that parents should have that much control over their child's life?