In Pride and Prejudice, what are two statements Jane Austen gives to indicate Elizabeth's prejudice during the proposal scene?

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Tamara K. H. | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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In the proposal scene that takes place at the parsonage at Rosings in Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen gives us several lines that indicate Elizabeth's prejudiced thoughts towards Darcy. One of them Elizabeth says towards the beginning: "The feelings which, you tell me, have long prevented the acknowledgment of your regard, can have little difficulty in overcoming it after this explanation." In other words, Elizabeth is declaring that since Darcy feels he shouldn't care for her, Elizabeth is sure that he won't care for her much longer. This statement is interesting because it shows us just how prejudiced Elizabeth is against his nature. She believes that he is completely without any feelings due to his pride. Since his pride prevents him from having real feelings other people have, his feelings for her cannot be genuine and won't last long.

A second statement Austen gives us to demonstrate Elizabeth's prejudice against Darcy is, "Your character was unfolded in the recital which I received many months ago from Mr. Wickham." Elizabeth had no real reason to trust Wickham. The only reason she believed Wickham's account of Darcy is because Elizabeth saw Darcy to be a proud, arrogant, despicable man. Darcy's pride made Elizabeth very willing to quickly believe the worst of him. Hence, Wickham's accounts of Darcy prejudiced Elizabeth against Darcy, while she was already prejudiced against him due to his pride, and her prejudice is revealed in this line.


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