How Does Pip Develop Throughout The Novel

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“Great Expectations” is the story of the main character, Pip’s, development from his childhood to the mature acceptance of his true self. This novel explores relationships between friends and family and emotions that influence these relationships. All characters in the novel relate to the downfall and redemption of each other, specifically Pip. “True identities are masked even from themselves under conventionally prescribed poses” (Johnson 1) Pip’s true identity is concealed throughout the novel as he lives his life based on the influences of others. However, Pip’s gradual change in maturity seen throughout the book is also a result of those who influence him. Pip’s experiences throughout the novel lead to a “constant sense of discovery” (Johnson …show more content…
Many years later he is reunited with the convict, Abel Magwitch. He learns that all of his inheritance was from Magwitch, to make Pip a gentleman. Magwitch is banned from England due to his extensive criminal record. Magwitch’s background of orphanage and crime inspired him to dedicate his life to making Pip into the man he could never become. Magwitch’s criminal history can be seen as the foundation of Pip’s downfall. “It was Pip’s simple act of stealing food as a small boy to help the escaped Magwitch that led to his ‘great expectations’” (Markey 105). When Pip stole food for Magwitch, it inspired the convict to risk his life to provide Pip with a life of luxury. Pip still does everything he can to get rid of Magwitch as soon as possible. Pip’s obsession with social classes causes him to become embarrassed by Magwitch, despite all he has done for him. Pip is ashamed to learn that the convict, representing the lower class, is the one supplying his wealth, not Miss Havisham. Pip is disgusted by Magwitch’s lack of classiness, poor language, and criminal background. Pip does not want to be seen with Magwitch because he does not fit into Pip’s new identity, despite the fact that he is the reason for Pip’s current social standing. Magwitch’s role in Pip’s life is ironic. “The young man with ‘expectations’ and a horror of crime can do neither, which makes doubly ironical Magwitch’s part in bringing about this …show more content…
Joe expresses his loyalty throughout the book by never turning Pip away despite the way he treats him, he sees beneath the surface and finds the good in Pip. His unconditional love helped Pip realize what is truly important in his life. Pip’s obsession with wealth and social ranking were the root of his downfall. Pip learns that social classes do not equal moral value from Magwitch; despite his background full of crime and poverty, Pip eventually sees Magwitch as a genuine noble soul. Miss Havisham, although she provided a substantial amount of negative influences, taught Pip that money is not the root of happiness. Critics have attributed Pip’s success as a character to his relationships with others and their influences on him. In “Great Expectations”, Dickens portrays Pip’s development and maturity as a result of the characters that influence him. Once Pip eventually depletes his expectations and has nowhere to turn, he recognizes that his true, loyal friends are far more significant than his social

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