What devotes Pip to Estella against her cold blooded manipulation?
Given Dickens’s portrayal of Estella, what do you think attracts Pip to her in the first place and what, when he learns of her cold-blooded manipulation of men such as her husband, keeps Pip devoted to her until the end, loving her “against reason, against promise, against peace.”
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From the very first meeting between Pip and Estella in Chapter 8, it is clear that Pip is fascinated by Estella, and associates her with his "great expectations". It is his meeting with Estella that makes him aware of his humble origins and "crude" manners (for example, calling the jacks knaves), and it is after this meeting that Pip feels unsatisfied with his life and begins to desire to rise in society. Pip then is not only attracted by Estella's beauty but also attracted by the dream of moving into high society, of which Estella becomes an important symbol.
Of course, as the novel progresses, both Pip and the reader realises that ironically, Estella is anything but a symbol of high society, having lower origins than Pip himself. Pip is able to remain in love and captivated by Estella because he comes to realise that they both share certain similarities: both have been "used" by others (Magwitch and Miss Havisham) as a form of revenge, and both lack parental figures. We thus see the kind of love that Pip has for Estella mature and develop throughout the novel.
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