First Impressions In Jane Austen's Pride And Prejudice

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It is common knowledge that first impressions often last even after an individual has been acquainted with said person for a long period of time (Austin 2015). Jane Austen’s novel, Pride and Prejudice, portrays a reoccurring sense of preconceived perceptions of various characters throughout the story, resulting in many misunderstandings among relationships between them. The main character, Elizabeth Bennet, mistakenly judges Fitzwilliam Darcy and George Wickham based on her prejudice and inaccurate conceptions. Darcy also misjudges and wrongly perceives one of the key characters, Elizabeth as an inferior rather than an equal, due to his arrogance and vanity. Hence, the fixed notions depicted in the beginning of the novel, mainly by Elizabeth and Darcy, influence the various relationships between characters prompting the progression of the storyline. (Lane 2015)

The original title of Austen’s novel is First Impressions, making the theme evidently significant, but is now rephrased to Pride and Prejudice. To begin with, the most prominent theme in the story is the initial thoughts of major characters affect the plot and influence the main scheme of the novel greatly. Elizabeth’s main perception of Darcy immerges from an overheard conversation Darcy has with his virtuous friend, Mr. Bingley. Darcy initially insults Elizabeth for being of the Bennet family when Bingley persuades him to dance with her. “She is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me, and I am in no
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