Pride and Prejudice Discussion

Yesterday we had our February meeting and we had a wonderful discussion about Pride and Prejudice.

I put together a list of 15 questions that I pulled from various sources (list at the bottom of this post).

Here are some of the ones we discussed:
  • How are Elizabeth’s wit and intelligence and independence first made clear in the novel? In what ways, during the course of the novel, is she the victim of her own intellect and independence? Are these features eventually responsible for her happy ending?
  • In 1814 Mary Russell Mitford wrote: "It is impossible not to feel in every line of Pride and Prejudice. . . the entire want of taste which could produce so pert, so worldly a heroine as the beloved of such a man as Darcy. . . Darcy should have married Jane." Would you have liked the book as well if Jane were its heroine?
  • Austen suggests that in order to marry well a woman must be pretty, respectable, and have money. In the world of Pride and Prejudice, which of these is most important? Spare a thought for some of the unmarried women in the book-Mary and Kitty Bennet, Miss de Bourgh, Miss Georgiana Darcy, poor, disappointed Caroline Bingley. Which of them do you picture marrying some day? Which of them do you picture marrying well?
  • In what ways is Elizabeth out of place in her own family? How do they limit what she can do with her “lively mind”? What do Darcy and Pemberly represent to Elizabeth? To what extent do you think family makes a person who he or she is? How does family influence the way others think of that person?
  • Mrs. Bennet, Mr. Collins, and Lady Catherine de Bourgh are famously comic characters. What makes them so funny? How does Elizabeth’s perception of them affect your trust in Elizabeth’s views of other people in the book, particularly of Wickham and Darcy?
Discussion Question Sources:

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