Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)

Pride and Prejudice is Jane Austen‘s first novel (albeit published only after Sense and Sensibility) and the first novel I read by her. And it’s good. I know why it’s considered a classic.

Although I like Sense and Sensibility a bit better (judging from the movies), I figured I’d start with Pride and Prejudice, because I just saw the BBC version as well as the 2005 movie. [Yeah, I like Jane Austen a lot.] [And a combination between the two movies would be the perfect adaptation.]

Anyway, the story, I think, is widely known, I won’t dive into that right now. If you don’t know it, read the wiki article I linked to above.

Interesting to see the differences between the movie(s) and the book. The book leaves a lot of room for interpretation, mostly by having a lot of dialogue, without specifying how it is said.
So, for example, comparing the two movie version, I wondered, if Charlotte Lucas was actually happy. In the BBC version, she seems really very unhappy with her choice to marry Mr. Collins, in the 2005 movie she seems very content with her situation. And – as I see it in the book – the 2005 version is truer to the original. Charlotte pursues Mr. Collins and goes with seeing eyes into the marriage, knowing exactly what she’s going to get and being satisfied, even if not happy, to get just that. [Also she’s 27, so she doesn’t have much of a choice anymore.]

I was a bit disappointed in Mr. Bennet. I always really liked him and his sarcasm, and that’s not missing in the book, but reading about him, he seems more like an asshole. But still very funny.
And Mrs. Bennet, if that’s possible, is even more annoying in the book.
I always had the secret hope that despite their different tempers and characters and their constant annoying each other, Mr. and Mrs. Bennet actually liked each other, but the book made it very clear that it isn’t so.

I was surprised at how short the whole thing was. I suspected that the book had to be much longer to fit everything that was in the movie, but Austen writes mostly in scenes and describes a lot of things in a couple of sentences. I was really surprised, when the second ball took place already on page 24 (or so). [And I thought, I’d need a month to read it… a week was all it took.]

Summarising, a really good read.

6 thoughts on “Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)

  1. Pingback: Emma (Jane Austen) « Stuff

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  3. I’m currently reading the book. I don’t know how I feel about it.

    Austen has a keen eye and much wit. On the other hand nothing really happens, and all the characters have nothing to do.
    I’m also a bit disappointed with Darcy. I know many intelligent girls/women with an obsession for this character and therefore I assumed I would like him, too. Only that I think he is boring. Perhaps if Rupert Everett was Darcy, his arrogance would be intersting?

    PS: I quite likeMrs. Benett and don’t find her annoying.

    • I don’t know why Darcy is everybody’s favorite romantic hero, either. But then, I never was one for the haughty, arrogant type. And even compared to Edward Ferrars (Sense and Sensibility) or Mr Knightley (Emma) or Henry Tilney (Northanger Abbey), Darcy just loses out in my opinion. I like Bingley much better.

      But no matter what Austen novels you read, the characters will never have much to do. I think life was that way for this certain middle-to-upper class at the time. I don’t mind that.
      The plots are slow to get started, though. But by the end, it’s always surprising how much actually happened after all.

      Anyway, Pride and Prejudice is really not my favorite Austen. But Austen is awesome.

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