Elizabeth Bennet Pride And Prejudice Feminist Analysis

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In her book "Pride and Prejudice", Jane Austen illustrates the female protagonist, Elizabeth
Bennet as a strong advocate of feminism and female independence. She manages to do so by drawing a stark contrast between Elizabeth and the other female characters, Charlotte, Jane and
Caroline. Each of these women conforms to the socially imposed gender conventions of Regency England, while Elizabeth artfully challenges gender discrimination. Contrary to her female foils, she remains steadfast to her feminist intent, persistently refusing to concede to the highly mainstream views of the society that women should elevate their chances of marriage with a man of good fortune. This, along with her determination to alter the societal bounds that
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Darcy, eventually causing him to put her on the upper hand instead of Caroline.

To portray Elizabeth’s feminist views on marriage, Austen again endeavors to bring Charlotte Lucas, an intimate friend of Elizabeth into light. Both Elizabeth and Charlotte confides in their non concurring opinions about matrimony to each other. Charlotte, desperate to find a husband seeks an opportunity to charm Mr. Collins immediately, upon Elizabeth turning down his proposal. She is also convinced that "happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance and so even with an unlikeable man, marriage is a risk always worth taking". Elizabeth Bennet finds Charlotte’s views on marriage embarrassing, illogical and morally disquieting. She takes them first as a joke but later as a "most humiliating picture" when Charlotte finally gives her consent to marry Mr. Collins. Although Elizabeth feels that Charlotte’s opinion of marriage is not exactly like her own, she thinks that "when called into action, Charlotte would rise above practical necessity, prize affection above status and choose consensual admiration over social prudence".
Instead, to her dismay she feels Charlotte "had sacrificed every better feeling to
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In addition, it manages to strengthen Elizabeth’s feminist stance on marriage as she repeatedly expresses her disillusionment on Charlotte marrying for financial security abandoning the possibility of a romantic relationship.

The third contrast with Elizabeth that Austen highlights is with her very own older sister, Jane

which tends to enhance Elizabeth’s distinct feminist character traits from Jane. Jane is the

quintessential ideal woman, beautiful, well mannered, and agreeable who confirms her typical

Regency era woman characteristics by concealing her emotions from Mr Bingley. While she had

hoped to please and attract Mr. Bingley’s attention, her passive display of interest nearly causes

her to lose his affection. Conversely, Elizabeth’s outspoken confidence and courage is again

proved when she rejects Mr. Darcy’s marriage proposal primarily due to his prejudiced feelings

towards the Bennet family’s lower social status and inferior connections. Jane believes that

passive behavior is appropriate for attracting a husband. However, in practice, she is unable

to show partiality in regards to Mr.Bingley. Elizabeth cannot comprehend how other

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