Let’s talk about my favorite literary character and book today, Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice. You don’t have to know me for long before figuring out that I am obsessed with this novel and hopelessly in love with the perfect Mr. Darcy. It’s a sad life, I know.
However, I have been thinking a lot about cultural clashes and how people have overcome them, especially the expectations placed on women. It wasn’t too long ago when women were barred from many professional areas such as medicine and science. However modern times have given women so many opportunities and I think we should take advantage of that. After all, those women didn’t march through the streets during the feminist movement for nothing.
The clash that Elizabeth Bennet faces is the one between her mother’s efforts to marry her off to the first decent man to come along, and Elizabeth’s own respect for herself. The constant struggle between society’s expectations and the Elizabeth’s own desires creates the entire plot of the novel. Time and time again Elizabeth turns down proposals and drives men off with her witty tongue, much to her mother’s dismay. This brings me to my point that Elizabeth Bennet is a model example of a strong independent woman.
Back in the 1800’s, women could not be the kick ass independent women we see today. However, Elizabeth was basically the equivalent back then. She turned down two proposals! Both of those proposals would have been extremely advantageous to her in debt family. She sticks to her principles and only marries Mr. Darcy when she truly knows that she loves him and that he loves her. Insert adoring “aww” here.
So what does this have to do with anything? I say we should carry on Elizabeth’s fiery character and be that strong independent woman. Elizabeth’s character has already survived through the ages and has been remade into popular movies and web series, such as Bridget Jones’ Diary, and the Youtube series, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. If we can all just do what we want to do, and not was society expects of us, I believe a happy ending will be in our future, and this doesn’t apply to just women. Although we can’t all find our Mr. Darcy’s (however I am still keeping a look out), at least our self-respect and dignity shall be kept in tact.
For all of those who haven’t read Pride and Prejudice, go read it.