What is the political theme of Pride and Prejudice?My teacher said that political theme is how individuals and/or societies use power and establish political systems. I just don't understand what...

What is the political theme of Pride and Prejudice?

My teacher said that political theme is how individuals and/or societies use power and establish political systems. I just don't understand what the possible political theme might be for this book.

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lsumner | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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Politics consist of "social relations involving authority or power and refers to the regulation of a political unit, and to the methods and tactics used to formulate and apply policy" (Dictionary.com).

If this is the definition your teacher is using, Darcy, and his aunt Lady Catherine are at the heart of the upper class. They are powerful in the decisions they make and have authority because of their social standing. The Bingleys have social status because they accumulated great wealth in merchant trade.

One had to be of high social standing to circulate in their group of friends. In fact, social standing is one reason Mr. Bingley agrees not to marry Jane initially. In fact, his sister makes the comment about the possible relationship as saying, "You can't be serious."

Initially, Darcy is turned off to the thought of being interested in Elizabeth because of her family's imprudent behavior. He claims that she is inferior to him by virtue of the crassness of her mother and sisters. But Elizabeth tells Lady de Bourgh:

He is a gentleman; I am a gentleman's daughter; so far we are equal [in social rank] (Chapter 56).

Ultimately, love prevails and Darcy decides to ask Elizabeth to marry him despite her family. Initially, Elizabeth refuses due to her own prejudices against the snobbery of men like Darcy.

Darcy is a political entity in that he has authority because of his social status. The way the political system works is that people with money have all the power: Money determined power. Politics is totally dependent upon the people with the wealth. Politicians usually are of upper class birth and rank. Darcy, though not of the nobility (Mr. Darcy) was such a man based on his family connections and upper-class rank.

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