“Pride and Prejudice” Reflections: Challenging Sexist Stereotypes

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Updated: Sep 07, 2023
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This research essay, “Pride and Prejudice,” written by Jane Austin, is going to be broken down into several topics. The title clarifies that pride and Prejudice can be used to wear down or strengthen women’s sexist stereotypes, respectively. This research will address the social and cultural traditions, the implications of marriage and monetary rules, Elizabeth’s foundation, and stand against another woman.

Socio-Cultural Traditions and Implications of Marriage

After deep examination, Pride and Prejudice do not focus on Time or space.

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‘Time and space are small in Pride and Prejudice. With no abysses of past or future (Ghent 300), and characters are not subjected to penances. Pride and Prejudice turned around old England in Jane Austen’s Time and primarily emphasizes the cultural and traditional views of these times. In Austen’s Time, women were forced to get married and base that marriage on financial status rather than love and emotions so they could secure their future. ‘The desperation of the hunt is the desperation of economic survival: girls in a family like that of the Bennets must succeed in running down solvent young men to survive’ (Ghent 301). The reason behind this was the thrive for a good living status “… the female, the pursuer and the male a shy and elusive prey.” (Ghent 301). Specifically concentrating on the production of women’s sexist stereotypes.

The Central Themes: Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice is clearly the main focus of the novel, in which society lacks the fundamental qualities to rise in the civilization ladder. As a matter of fact, prejudices that are found in Elizabeth’s actions towards Darcy and vice versa is the clear proof of what the novel is focused on. Realization of mistakes that have been made, both of them apologize and hope they improved in civility matters. ‘We have both, I hope, improved in civility’ (Austen 240). Supporting women’s sexist stereotypes.

Elizabeth’s Character: A Beacon of Modernity

Elizabeth is a modern example of being able to face society in the right way; unimpressed by wealth or social status, she impersonates what her mother said, ‘If I can only see one of my daughters happily settled at Netherfield and all the others equally well married, I shall suffer nothing to care for’ (Austen 6). A common and knowledgeable way of thinking is present in every house and mother’s way of raising children, which solemnly helps the promotion of women’s sexist stereotypes. Elizabeth is a keen character that makes the most important decisions, including daily problems, based on knowledge and intellectuality. She is a unique but not flawless character, but even though she might be wrong in some situations, she still stands out from other normalized women.

Conclusion: Jane Austen’s Vision

Jane Austen’s way of seeing Elizabeth as a hero is based on her modern, independent, and feminist way of viewing things. Susie Steinbach said, ‘she was a harsh observer of the legal, economic, and cultural limitations placed on the women of the upper-middle classes who were her main characters’ (Steinbach 131). Elizabeth seems to be the beloved impersonator of Janes’s ways of thinking, taking action against the common stereotyping of women at the Time.


  1. Austen, Jane. “Pride and Prejudice”. Edited by Patricia Meyer Spacks, W. W. Norton & Company, 1993.
  2. Ghent, Dorothy Van. “The English Novel: Form and Function”. Harper & Row, 1953. (Pages 300-301)
  3. Steinbach, Susie. “Understanding the Victorians: Politics, Culture and Society in Nineteenth-Century Britain”. Routledge, 2012. (Page 131)
  4. Brownstein, Rachel M. “Why Jane Austen?”. Columbia University Press, 2011.
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"Pride and Prejudice" Reflections: Challenging Sexist Stereotypes. (2023, Jun 19). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/pride-and-prejudice-reflections-challenging-sexist-stereotypes/