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Word Count: 557
In Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen the entire novel is designed around a running theme pride and prejudice The passage in the novel that best relates this theme is in chapter thirty-four when Darcy is proposing to Elizabeth This chapter is significant because it is one of the few times where the characters acknowledge that the sole purpose of a persons life is to get a large salary and a high social stature Throughout the entire novel it seems evident that all the people care about is marrying into a higher social class And for those who are already wealthy and in a comfortable position in life it is imperative that they only marry someone who is equal in class or social ranking This is the case for Darcy and Elizabeth in chapter thirty-four Darcy knows that by offering his hand in marriage to Elizabeth he is lowering his standards in a social ranking He is so arrogant in his proposal that he even insults Elizabeth He says It is natural that obligation should be felt and I could feel gratitude I would now thank you But I cannot- I have never desired your good opinion and you have certainly bestowed it most unwillingly Could you expect me to rejoice in the inferiority of your connections To congratulate myself on the hope of relations whose condition in life is so decidedly beneath my own Austen 142-145 Unfortunately for Darcy Elizabeth only gets slightly insulted Her refusal of Darcy was initially because of his treatment of Wickham and his actions toward Jane and Bingleys relationship Elizabeths prejudice shows in her actions towards Darcy too She says From the very beginning from the first moment I may almost say of my acquaintance with you your manners impressing me with the fullest brief of your arrogance your conceit and your selfish disdain of the feelings of others were such as to form that groundwork of
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