Pride and Prejudice is a humorous novel about the trials of marrying well in the early eighteenth century. It focuses mainly on the actions of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy. Elizabeth Bennet is a vibrant, headstrong young woman who is not too keen on the idea of marriage , whereas Mr. Darcy is an egotistical and proud man who improves on closer acquaintance. All of these characteristics play off of one another throughout the course of events to create many interesting situations. Elizabeth Bennet’s wit is both humorous and intelligent.
There are repeated instances within the story in which she proves her cleverness and liveliness. Elizabeth demonstrates her intelligence by acknowledging that marriage does not always bring happiness. This kind of decision would have had to invoke a lot of thought towards the future and shows a mind that is able to grasp larger concepts and does not just follow the crowd. The dialogue between Elizabeth and Darcy reveals effectively the intelligence of both. Their forcefully expressed opinions provide us with ample indication of the strength of their personalities.
She seems to convey the underlining message that they are both sharp but that they bring out the quickness in one another with their intense , quick discussions. Elizabeth is apt enough that she is able to push Darcy into awkward positions and he is quick-witted enough that he can reverse the situation right back on her. Elizabeth Bennet is also very brave for the position in life that she is in. To not marry would put one in a very precarious situation financially and to be able to denounce tradition for the sake of one’s principles is foolhardy but brave.
The nature of Elizabeth Bennet is shown on the first visit to Rosings. Rosings Park is the manor of the Lady Catherine De Bourgh who is a most unpleasant and bossy woman. She is of great importance in society and is the aunt of Mr. Darcy . Everyone is intimidated by this woman except for Elizabeth who is strong enough in her own mind and character that she is not the least bit worried. This shows immense courage for someone of less breeding not to be worried about the opinion of a lady with greater consequence who could , if in ill favor of her , vex any hope of a good marriage.
Elizabeth also shows incredible amounts of independence for one that was raised in a society that was bent on making women dependent on their husbands and families – “ Elizabeth Bennet is fearless and independent” ( Butler) . Elizabeth shows this independence in two different circumstances. The first would be her dealings with Mr. Collins who is a revolting , pompous , moron. The family first comes into contact with him when it is made known that the estate is entailed on to him , their cousin , because there is no male to inherit it. Mr.
Collins soon becomes infatuated with Elizabeth and asks her hand in marriage. Elizabeth is both independent and smart enough to realize that he is far from a suitable mate as she poignantly addresses the subject. Her views on this relationship are extremely humorous and true : “ You could not make me happy , and I am convinced I am the last woman in the world who would make you so” ( Austen 102 ) . Elizabeth seems to have a feminist attitude. Alice Chandler is of the opinion that “ Elizabeth acts out a traditionally defensive female role” ( 37 ).
She was a feminist for those times and should be praised for her accomplishments and achievements of making the female gender seem more equal towards that of men. It was quite clear that Miss Bingley was quite jealous of Elizabeth’s ability to enthrall Mr. Darcy. It could be assumed that through Miss Bingley , Elizabeth’s character might be enhanced through an astute reader’s observations. Elizabeth Bennet is seen as a typical female during those times. It is through her intelligence , bravery , independence , and feminist views that one can make the outline of her character.