Essay on Great Expectations by Jane Austen

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Great Expectations by Jane Austen

There are two different types of gentleman are presented to the reader throughout Great Expectations. The first is Pip's earlier definition, where he finds a gentleman to be someone with wealth, "breeding", education, and social status. This materialistic definition of a gentleman is exactly like the description of Bentley Drummle, who, however is obviously not a gentleman in behavior or manners - "...he was idle, proud, niggardly, reserved and suspicious. He came of rich people ... who had nursed this combination of qualities until they made the discovery that it was just of age and a blockhead." One of the aspects of being "gentlemanly" to Pip was education. When
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This offends Joe deeply, so much that he almost hits Mr. Jaggers - "Which I meantersay...that if you come into my place bull-baiting and badgering me, come out!". Joe only wishes for Pip's welfare, and cannot believe that money would go any way to compensate for the loss of Pip. Jaggers makes assumptions about Joe and Joe's values just because he is of a poorer and lower class than he. The contrast between the stereotypical view of a gentleman - Mr. Jaggers and Joe is so strong that you can easily see which of them comes out of this situation as more of a gentleman - Joe. The exterior vision of a gentleman becomes very important to Pip in the earlier stages of the novel - the clothes and general appearance of his surroundings obsess him to such a point that he appoints the "Avenger" to serve on him. The Avenger, though expensively dressed, seems to be absolutely ridiculous - dressed in a canary yellow waistcoat. To him, gentlemen deserve respect, and once Pip "becomes" a gentleman, this appears to happen - he is treated respectfully by Trabb when he goes to buy his clothes, when previously he wasn't given a second glance. However, there is a slight flaw to this image in the shape of Trabb's boy and the Avenger himself. Both offer him as much respect as he deserved - and at this point in

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