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A Classic that transcends time!
Jan 12, 2003 11:34 PM 8753 Views
(Updated Jan 12, 2003 11:45 PM)

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Jane Austen is aptly considered one of the best English novelist and her novels have cut across time and cultures . One of her best and most famous novels is ,''Pride and Prejudice'' , the story which was as relevant at that time as it is today.


The story is set in the 19th century Elizabethan era where the most important task for a girl was to find a rich husband.This is the mindset of Mrs. Benett who wants to get her daughters married off as quickly as possible...but Elizabeth (the heroine) has a mind of her own.She refuses to marry the guy who was found suitable for her ...and instead falls in love with the arrogant , rich and irresistable Mr.Darcy. Jane, her younger sister, also falls in love with a young , decent guy of a rich family and makes her mother proud ...while another sister gets involved with a guy who has all the good looks but no depth of character.On the other hand, the novel also highlights how Darcy misunderstands Elizabeth, how he changes after he falls in love , how he rids of the prejudices he holds!


Austen had first wanted to title her novel as ''First Impressions'' as this is what the novel is about...how all the characters judged each other on first impression and were proved wrong. Austen has shown brilliant character portrayal in Elizabeth...sparkling, witty and intelligent, rebellious with a mind of her own , ready to stand for her rights, passionate and humorous...she wins the hearts of the readers. Infact, Austen has herself said that Elizabeth is one of her favorite heroines. Then there is Darcy....( how can I ever forget him!) ...handsome , rich , too arrogant for his own good, stubborn , intelligent and unattached (most important..hihi) ...he is made of the stuff girls dream of! You hate him for hurting Elizabeth , for being obstinate, for having too much pride ...but your heart melts for him, and for his anguish ...and you are ready to forgive him everything!


In her storytelling, Austen also spends considerable time in developing the sub-plot and also shows the progress in the relationship of the other sisters of Elizabeth. The book showcases one of the best and vivid description of the English countryside, interspersed with memorable dialogues and hilarious and comic narrative. Austen wrote in an era where women writers were few and rarely found and her popularity speaks volumes of her ability in the art of story telling.Austen had defied society norms and broken traditions by writing novels...and the same spirit , same strength of character she passes on to her heroines.


And as far as relevance is concerned, we see the same plot being used by so many other writers ...in so many movies... over the years that one loses count! So , if you have not read this timeless and universal classic...you have missed one of the best books of all times...which will bring a smile , a tear , a sigh ...a blissful feeling in the end ...for all readers!


In the end what Austen wanted to say was that love makes us overcome our weaknesses, makes us see our own faults, makes us do things which we never thought we could do ...it is a liberating force...it makes us a wiser and a better human being!


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Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
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