What language tecniques are displayed in Chapter 19 of Pride and Prejudice?

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accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

You might want to consider the use of irony in this hilarious chapter, which features the infamous proposal of Mr. Collins to Elizabeth. Austen is an authoress known for her biting use of irony, and this excerpt is no exception, especially when Austen has Mr. Collins protesting his love to Lizzie in a way that is in such contrast to his character, and indeed the complete absence of real love that he feels towards Lizzie. Note the following example:

And now nothing remains for me but to assure you in the most animated language of the violence of my affection.

The words "animated" and "violence" are adjectives that we would never normally assoicate with the sober and ridiculous Mr. Collins, and please note the way that this phrase is sandwiched by his cold, calculating and analytical reasons for marrying her because of the way that Longbourne is entailed away from the female line and Elizabeth's poor economical situation. To express the "violence" of his feelings in between such cruel and thoughtless reminders of the harsh economic situation that Lizzie finds herself in both is ironic because it is no way in which to propose marriage and also paints Mr. Collins to be even more absurd than he was before, as "affection" has nothing to do with his choice. You might like to examine the rest of this chapter to analyse the role of irony as a technique.

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Pride and Prejudice

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