Boxall's 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die discussion

Pride and Prejudice
This topic is about Pride and Prejudice
119 views
1001 Monthly Group Read > January {2017} Discussion -- PRIDE AND PREJUDICE by Jane Austen

Comments Showing 1-9 of 9 (9 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

Charity (charityross) Discuss!


message 2: by Terrence (last edited Jan 22, 2017 11:32PM) (new) - added it

Terrence Perera (terrenceperera) | 7 comments The essence of the book is the “pride” of Darcy and the “prejudice” of Elisabeth against him and the subsequent resolutions thereof. Darcy has an inborn pride in him that makes him, at his first introduction to the reader, unpopular at the assembly ball. “His manners gave a disgust...for he was discovered to be proud; to be above his company and above being pleased.” Elizabeth is immediately prejudiced against him.
Nevertheless, despite his pride he, against his will, falls in love with Elizabeth. And his love reaches a climax when at “Rosings” he declares his love to her.
However, by then Elizabeth is completely prejudiced against him. She believes Wickam’s story of how Darcy has mistreated and ruined him. Further, she has learnt that Darcy has been instrumental in breaking off Bingley’s love affair with her sister, Jane.
Hence, she refuses his offer and she is also angered by his way of proposing to her. He is confident that Elizabeth, being of a lower social level than he, will jump at his offer. She says: “had you behaved in a more gentlemanlike manner...”
Darcy is humbled by her refusal of his love and ponders over her remark, “Had you behaved in a more gentlemanlike manner...” He begins to change and his pride to disappear and his love for her strengthens.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth’s prejudice also diminishes. When she reads his letter she believes in the rascality of Wickam and realizes that Darcy is, after all, not the “bad guy” she thought he was. When she visits “Pemberly” with Mr and Mrs Gardiner, the splendour of the place dazzles her. Her encounter there with Darcy and his changed, “gentlemanlike” behavior further draws her to him: she reciprocates his love and begins to love him, all her prejudice resolved!
Then came Lydia’s elopement with Wickam and the role Darcy played in bringing about their marriage. Her gratitude to him further strengthens her regard and love for him.
The introduction of Mr Collins into the novel with his silly, odd behaviour and his preoccupation with the magnificence of “Rosings” brings some “comic relief” to the story and adds much to the popularity of the novel.
At the same time the author makes a point re the marriage of Charlotte with Mr Collins.
Charlotte is not “in love” with Mr Collins, though she marries him. She wants to settle down in life and have a good home. Despite his idiosyncrasies, Mr Collins is a respectable man with a good income. I think the point that Jane Austen wishes to make is that passionate love is not an essential prerequisite to a happy marriage and a happy family life; that “falling in love” before marriage as advocated by the Bennet sisters is not essential.


Nicola | 765 comments I've read this so many times. I own three copies: one as part of a complete omnibus, one stand alone book and one pocket book sized with teeny tiny writing!

It's such a comfort read. I've just finished reading Mansfield Park, not re-read quite so much but probably 5 times or so, and, although I'm enjoying it more each time I read it, there is still nothing to compare with the lively wit of Elizabeth. Of all of Austen's many characters I think that Lizzie is the most modern in many ways. She's got 'good friend' stamped all over her :-)


Alia His proposal was peppered with insults… I honestly can't tell which one is prouder or more prejudiced. Kudos to Eliza for having too much pride to fall for that, though.


Jennifer Tupaea | 9 comments Absolutely fell in love with this book. It's my mums favourite and she has been encouraging me to read it for years. No idea why I waited so long.

I found myself laughing, squirming at the awkward bits, being outraged at the rudeness of some of the characters (namely lady Charlotte) and feeling down for them when it all went a bit wrong.

Hadn't expected such a response to one of the classics but truly adored it and can't wait to read more of her work.


Mary Pop-In (marypopin) | 1 comments This book is the goldmine from which almost all romance movies and books get their plots from. No wonder I have never read a romance that didn't remind me of this book in some way or the other.


Amanda Dawn | 178 comments I read this book before starting the 1001 list, years ago when I bought a Jane Austen boxset and read them all in succession. Admittedly, I had to review the plot to distinguish it from the other books (mostly Sense and Sensibility) , because all my Austen was blurring together.

I, only somewhat jokingly, like to call myself an angry radical feminist: I don't really believe in marriage, and I hate pomp and circumstance and unnecessary social propriety. But I've always still enjoyed reading Jane Austen and been confused as to why.

I was reading a lot of analysis of Pride and Prejudice, and her novels in general, and I think I've found out why. One of the things I love about her books is that while they are about these conventions, they are full of subtle ironies about their inherent ridiculousness as well. Which is why I love the stealthily catty phrasing of the famous opening line to "Pride and Prejudice", it really sets the tone of the book. They are also fundamentally about women asserting their autonomy in regards to their romantic prospects: even if they are still asserting more choice in a limited life trajectory and social framework, this is still a step for empowerment at the time. I found Elizabeth to be a really endearing and enchanting protagonist because she is so spirited (and I can also be too shady and critical for my own good, so I identified with her in a lot of ways XD).

Finally, I read an analysis of the importance of Austen's books that really stuck with me: the idea that deep self discovery and actualization can happen just as much in the parlour and through relationships with those in your community as it can on grand sweeping adventures. I think this is so important because she is one of the forerunners of establishing "feminine" stories as just as worthy as representation and examination as "manly" adventures and epics for establishing these ideas. And honestly, how many people in life go on an epic adventure? not many really, but we all still consider having gone through personal growth in life in more common and domestic ways, and consider that important. Her books are timeless in that way, and I think validating that position really resonated with me as a reader.


Augusta I agree with your comments Amanda, some good points about how she was writing a lot more than just romance novels. I think the progressive nature of her work gets lost because it was such a long time ago and as you said, it is very subtle.


Alana (alanasbooks) | 124 comments After now having read this at LEAST three times (if not four, I've lost count) I think what impresses me more each time isn't even so much the change of perspective in Lizzy or the corrected behavior of Darcy, or their story at all.... it's all the other side characters that give it so much life. The more I read it, the more I love Mr. Collins.... simply because he is so detestably unlovable! I cringe every time he speaks, but it's like watching a train wreck...you just can't stop looking! He's ridiculous! And everything at Rosings and all the outrageousness of the girls' mother... all the silly characters are what make the story so interesting and it's only in the comparison with them that Jane, Lizzy, Bingley and Darcy have their appeal. And it's just so darn fun!


back to top

970

Boxall's 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die

unread topics | mark unread


Books mentioned in this topic

Mansfield Park (other topics)