Pride And Prejudice And The Edible Woman: Negative Effects Of The Society's Influence


Pride and Prejudice and The Edible Woman: Negative Effects of the Society's
Throughout history, society has played an important role in forming
the value and attitudes of the population. Jane Austen's Pride and
Prejudice and Margaret Atwood's The Edible Woman are two novels which
exemplify the negative effects of society's influence. Both Elizabeth
Bennet and Marian McAlpin are strong women who rebel against society's
influences in their lives. They refuse to accept the pre-set roles and
identities handed to them. Both women realize that the individual's needs
are not necessarily the same as what society imposes on them; they rebel
against this very society in order to gain the ...

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fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine
thing for our girls!” (51). Bingly is immediately acceptable due to his
money and connections, and Mrs. Bennet is already dreaming that one of her
children will marry him. In fact, “the business of her life was to get her
daughters married” (53). One of Elizabeth's close friends, Charlotte
Lucas, feels “happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance” (69).
She feels that marriage is a vehicle to gain wealth and connections, a view
which has obviously been pushed upon her by society. Elizabeth refuses to
accept this view. She feels marriage is for love, not money, and finds it a
“fantastic nightmare” that “economic and social institutions have such
power over the values of personal relationships” (Harding 167). However,
Charlotte later marries Mr. Collin and sacrifices love for worldly
advantage. Mr. Darcy also assumes everyone marries for wealth. He feels
the Bennet's lack of money “must very materially lessen their ...

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she is only concerned with what “
everybody” will think. Elizabeth, however, will not let herself be
intimidated, and refuses to promise that she will not marry Darcy. Lady
Catherine replies to Elizabeth's defiance by asking, “do you know who I am?
I have not been accustomed to such language as this” (364). Hence, society
is not used to being rejected. But due to Elizabeth's resistance to what
society dictates as her needs, she and Darcy find their way back to each
other and are betrothed. While this marriage may not be suitable in the
eyes of “everyone”, as Lady Catherine thinks, it is right for the two
people who matter.
Atwood's late 20th century novel also illustrates ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 5/12/2004 05:47:20 PM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Free Paper
Words: 1532
Pages: 6

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