Charles Dickens ' Great Expectations Essay

2121 Words Dec 1st, 2016 9 Pages
Wealth and Status Do not Equal Happiness
Many think that fame and fortune determines the value of a person in society. However, author, Charles Dickens, criticizes the social structures at play in the Victorian Era as Pip changes his personality and beliefs to conform to high society. In Great Expectations, Pip unexpectedly enters a life of luxury and its benefits. He discovers that wealth and status do not equal happiness. Pip notices his sudden change in his beliefs when he suddenly wants to abandon all he has ever known in his life and break off from close childhood friends like Joe. Magwitch servers as a mentor who helps revert Pip back to his original self and views. Social class negatively affects personality and beliefs as Estella changes and corrupts Pip in Great Expectations.
In Great Expectations, Estella negatively impacts Pip by changing his personality and beliefs in order to conform him to the upscale lifestyle and social class. Estella frowns upon Pip’s arrival and does not hold back from showing her dissatisfaction. Their initial meeting is short and brusk and Estella is rude to Pip, referring to him as “boy” (Dickens 69). By this word choice, Estella immediately conveys her superiority over Pip. Even though the two characters are similar in age, by neglecting to call Pip by his proper name, this interaction shows Estella’s lack of respect towards him. Estella’s coldness towards Pip suggests that Pip will need to overcome many obstacles in order for him to…

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