maandag 18 mei 2015

Jane Austen: Pride and Prejudice


I’m halfway through reading Austen’s work for the second time.
This one has 396 lovely pages.
You can find all my Jane Austen reviews here.

“Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen's witty comedy of manners--one of the most popular novels of all time--that features splendidly civilized sparring between the proud Mr. Darcy and the prejudiced Elizabeth Bennet as they play out their spirited courtship in a series of eighteenth-century drawing-room intrigues.”

I LOVED this novel.

Here’s why.
The novel is so easy to read it’s almost unbelievable it is 200 years old. I flew through this.
Her characters (though intentionally overdone) feel very real, which makes the novel so satisfying. And this makes the annoying, hateful characters even more irritating I’m afraid.

But, Mr. and Mrs. Bennett lack serious judgment and they didn’t raise their daughters vey sensibly.
Women back then depended completely on the men in their lives (father or husband) to support them. So finding a husband with the means to do so was the one most important goal in a woman’s life. Seen in this light, Mrs. Bennett’s reactions are (although irritating and annoying) understandable (although I want to slap her sometimes to get the air and fluff out of her head). Mr. Bennett clearly does not understand the importance of this. I love his remarks and his sweet irony but he needs to be serious in his duty to find loving, providing husbands for them. Because that’s what life was like. Mr. Bennett dies, and the girls don’t have a penny.
Even after Lizzy asks her father to not let Lydia go to Brighton where she will surely make a spectacle of herself and disgrace herself and all her sisters; he doesn’t see it. Women’s reputations were and still are very brittle. Mr. and Mrs. Bennett should have done something about the two airheaded sisters Kitty and Lydia. But Mr. Bennett is lazy and he just doesn’t care.

Both Darcy and Lizzy are not completely conforming to social rules (like empty talking) and this is exactly what attracts them to each other.
Lizzy is intelligent, fun, independent, witty, loving, well-spoken and social. I would love her as a friend.

This is a truly amazing novel. It’s ironic, wise and just beautifully written.

Happy reading!