Patriarchy And The Patriarchy : Feminist Criticism Essay

1280 Words Dec 2nd, 2015 null Page
Predominance and the Patriarchy: Feminist Criticism in Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen’s classic novel, although published in a time period where women were very repressed, contains contemporary feminist ideas. Each of Austen’s characters possess various quirks and flaws that show women are more than their stereotypes. Women can be strong and independent, but also kind and romantic. Jane Austen’s portrayal of women creates a commentary on the stereotypical views of women and the unjust patriarchal society that controls them. The patriarchy’s effect on the novel is seen primarily through the act of entailment. Ownership of Mr. Bennet’s estate is exclusive to male heirs, so all five of his daughters and his wife must achieve financial stability through marriage. Mr. Collins, the Bennet’s closest male relative, however, will gain ownership of the estate and Mr. Bennet’s finances solely because he is a man. The women of the novel, particularly the lower class, are forced into a situation that puts money before their own personal happiness. They are being oppressed by the patriarchal society that controls their choices and reputation. Women are pressured into marriage for reasons related to reputation but also to achieve a higher social standing. Elizabeth’s close friend, Charlotte, exemplifies this pressure. She justifies her marriage to Mr. Collins by saying, “considering Mr. Collins’s character, connections, and situation in life, I am convinced that my chance of happiness…

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