Feminism In Pride And Prejudice

775 Words 4 Pages
Dancing in chains: feminist satire Pride and Prejudice written by Judith Wylie reflects on Jane Austen’s use of comedic characters in the novel Pride and Prejudice. Wylie analyzes the impact male supremacy and feminism has on the behavior and motives of individual characters throughout the novel. She specifically focuses on Jane Austen’s depiction of Mrs. Bennet. Wylie’s analysis of Mrs. Bennet is extremely helpful because it sheds insight on the difficult problem of feminism.
Wylie observes that Austen’s feminist message is revealed through Mrs. Bennet’s actions. When the reader is first introduced to Mrs. Bennet there is the immediate impression that she is stupid. It is easy for readers to jump to this conclusion because she is a woman.
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The dedication women possess towards marriage is shown through Mrs. Bennet. She is wholeheartedly focused on her five daughters finding husbands. She even takes extreme measures to assure her daughters find a man. For example, she makes Jane ride horseback during the rain in an effort to extend her visit with Mr. Bingley. The plan is successful because Jane ends up sick and has to stay with the Bingley’s until she is recovered. During this time, Mrs. Bennet has no concern for the fact her daughter is sick. Instead, she is satisfied that her daughter is spending more time with a potential husband. Although, some may think Mrs. Bennet is acting irrational, it ultimately is important for her to take advantage of this opportunity because her daughters can’t afford to not marry. Austen urges readers to see marriage from a female point of view. Mrs. Bennet’s character demonstrates that women obsess over marriage due to the lack of having any other …show more content…
Austen emphasizes the legal and social discrimination women endure. As seen through Mrs. and Mr. Bennet, it is clear the female is at a disadvantage. Due to legal customs Mrs. Bennet will lose her home after her husband dies because there is not a son to inherit the property. Mrs. Bennet’s questioning of the entail reveals a feminist view on the issue “How anyone could have the conscience to entail away an estate from one’s own daughters, I cannot understand” (Austen). Unlike Mrs. Bennet, Mr. Bennet will by no means be affected by the entail. He will not have to worry about finding a new home or trying to survive without a source of income. Therefore, it is understandable that Mrs. Bennet possesses concern for her daughters marrying because once Mr. Bennet dies, there will be no security for the

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