Illustration of Pip visiting a graveyard

Great Expectations

by Charles Dickens
Start Free Trial

Give examples of what Pip considers "good" things that Pip cannot fully enjoy because they are contaminated by something negative. Explain.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Pip enjoys telling a story to his sister and Mr. Pumblechook about the flags and the dogs and the coach and the black velvet and the games he played at Miss Havisham's house. He likes this because he knows he is getting away with a lie, but at the same time, the lie does indeed fill him with guilt.

Pip feels good about helping the convict have "wittles" at the beginning of the book, however he fills guilt for getting it for him because it meant he had to steal from his sister's pantry.

Throughout the book, Pip finds it good to leave his life at the forge to pursue his GREAT EXPECTATIONS. Unfortunately this means he changes. This change is negative because he leaves his best friend Joe Gargery in the dust.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team