Jane Austen: An Influential Writer In History
Jane Austen was born on December 16, 1775, in Hampshire England. Her father, Reverend George Austen worked as Steventonr’s rector and encouraged his children to embrace learning. Jane Austen was the seventh born of the family of eight children she had one sister and six brothers (Teachman 2).
She lived with her family and never married (Teachman 11). Jane commenced writing as a young teen, and it was her unique way of keeping the family entertained (Teachman 7). Her first novel, Sense and Sensibility was published in 1811. After much revision, Pride and Prejudice was published in 1813(Teachman 53). Incredibly, all her books were published anonymously, this being agreeable to her retiring personality. Jane died on July 18, 1817, and her remains are buried at Winchester Cathedral. Today, Jane is regarded as an English classic and one of the most influential authors in history (Teachman 17-18).
In Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen starts with sensational remarks, It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife (Austen 1). The statement makes it evident that Austen intends to inject profound humor by taking normal subjects, such as marriage, and ostentatiously writing of the judiciously. Pride and Prejudice is the best-known novel by Austen and it explores how a first impression can be elusive and create unnecessary prejudices which can be misleading. The main character in the novel is Elizabeth Bennet, who has four sisters and whose situations demand that they all marry well. The novel reveals Austenr’s humorous outlook of the humanr’s state of being. With this background, the next part of this paper will look at three articles about the novel.
In The impact of the Feminist Heroine: Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice published in the International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature, Hui-Chun Chang critically explores the feminist importance of Elizabeth Bennet. Chang asserts that while other female characters in the novel such as Caroline and Charlotte conform to the socially imposed gender norms, Elizabeth craftily challenges gender inequality (Chang 76). Chang contends that Elizabeth feminists views have a purpose that exceeds the comedic effect and Austen uses Elizabeth to voice her concerns about the socially imposed gender types (Chang 76). Rather than conforming to the popular one-dimensional view that Elizabeth attitude was only intended by Austen comedy, Chang adopts a broader perspective and hold that Elizabethr’s feminist acumen serves the role of influencing Mr. Darcyr’s character.
Chang comments that unlike other female characters, Elizabeth boldly speaks her mind decidedly and she is unwilling to bend to the rules of the societal dictate (Change 77). Hang contrasts Caroline and Elizabeth to prove that indeed, Elizabeth is different from other women in the novel. While Caroline embodies the stereotypical Regency-era woman who has been well educated as per the expectations of the society, she fails to value intellectual achievements, Elizabeth is motivated to pursue intellectual achievements despite not having gotten a typical female education. Chang argues that Elizabethr’s feminist qualities have come to light when contrasted against the female foils in the novel (Chang 82). Chang concludes that Elizabeth epitomizes how women can assert their independence and still catch the attention of a suitable husband. (Chang 82)
In Marriage in Jane Austenr’s Pride and Prejudice published in the International Journal of Media Culture and Literature, Amjad Azam Mohammed analyzes the situation of marriage in the Victorian age and how women were approaching it. Mohammed argues that during the Victorian age, women had different reasons for conducting marriage, including enhancing their social status and ensuring their future (Mohammed 59). During the era in which Austen wrote the novel, marriage was undergoing a significant change from an aristocratic institution to a tolerable institution that could identify the values of women. Mohammed asserts that the transition can be traced in the novel through the character of Elizabeth who defies the status quo and asserts her independence of thoughts and actions (Mohammed 60).
Mohammed argues that Pride and Prejudice provides a real-life experience into the institution of marriage during the Victorian age (Mohammed 62). Womenr’s were seen as menr’s property. Women were denied rights to inherit or possess anything left by their family. Also, women did not have a voice in the society. Austen suggests that many marriages were built on the material needs of women, but she encourages women to be independent and engage in marriage based on love (Mohammed 66). Mohammed concludes that despite varying reasons for marriages, Pride and Prejudice paints marriage as an institution that was experiencing inevitable progress.
In The Portrayal of Male Fools in Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice published in English Language and Literature Studies, Ali Albashir Mohammed Al-Haj examines how men are treated in Austenr’s novel Pride and Prejudice. Al-Haj asserts that Austenr’s work took an interest in people, instead of the ideas and the success of each work is contingent upon the exact presentation of human situations (Al-Haj 44). This infers that Austen was not a social reformer, rather she was a sharp observer who used her talent to make the society think of its flaws. According to Al-Haj, the character of male fools in Pride and Prejudice are fixed characters, who do not change throughout (Al-Haj 47). Al-Haj concludes that a male character in the novel is a fool to the extent that one is seen as a portraiture of good for nothing who does wrong professionally but is devoid of moral awareness.
In sum, Jane Austen is a renowned classic and an influential writer in history. Pride and Prejudice captures Austenr’s sense of humor and reveals how the author is meticulously using comic to castigate her society for oppressing women. Chang who authored the first article, has explored the novel through the personality of Elizabeth. The major conclusion of the article is that women can be independent and still marry a desirable husband. The second article that was examined in the paper, was authored by Mohammed. In his article he discussed the marriage institution and concluded that the Victorian themes that characterized the marriage institution were being threatened by a new breed of women such as Elizabeth who ushered the society to look at women from a different and new prospective. The third article that was written by Al-Haj who examines male fools in the novel. Al-Haj concludes that male fools in the novel are the male characters who promote status quo. Ultimately, all of the three articles have brought new ways to look at Austenr’s Pride and Prejudice.
Teachman, Debra. Student Companion to Jane Austen, Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated, 2000. ProQuest Ebook Central, pp.2,7,11,17-18,54. https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/fit/detail.action?docID=3000123.
Austen, Jane, and C. E. Brock. Pride and Prejudice. e-artnow, 2013. EBSCOhost, pp.1. search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=575319&site=ehost-live.
Chang, Hui-Chun. “The impact of the Feminist Heroine: Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice.” International Journal of Applied Linguistic & English Literature 3.3 (2014): 76-82.
Mohammed, Amjad Azam. “Marriage in Jane Austenr’s Pride and Prejudice.” International Journal of Media Culture and Literature 2.4 (2016): pp.59-73.
Al-Haj, Ali Albashir Mohammed. “The Portrayal of Male Fools in Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice.” English Language and Literature Studies 4.2 (2014): pp.44-50.
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