Show Elizabeth's prejudice towards Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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If Darcy's initial relationship towards Elizabeth is defined by pride, then certainly Elizabeth's relationship towards Darcy is defined by prejudice. Interestingly, Austen originally titled her novel First Impressions, and Elizabeth's first impressions of Darcy are something that she struggles to free herself from for a considerable time. Her first impression of his pride is fixed after their first meeting at the ball when she refuses to dance with her. This of course then only makes her more inclined to believe what Wickham tells her about his past and relationship with Darcy. When she hears Wickham's story, she makes her memories fit what she has been told:

I do remember his boasting one day, at Netherfield, of the implacability of his resentments, of his having an unforgiving temper. His disposition must be dreadful.

Having heard Wickham's story, even though Elizabeth questions it herself, she makes her memory "fit" what she has been told and then allows this prejudice to govern her attitude and her reactions towards Darcy from then on.

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