Is everyone ready to talk about one of the most talked about books there could be?! I never tire of talking of one of my favorite Austens (only because it's the first I read od hers and we have a special bond). Here are the questions. The meeting is this coming Thursday, the 16th. So send along some responses and let's have some discussing. I'll try to do better with discussing this time as I won't be preparing for a trip and am hoping I won't be sick.
1. For many people, P&P is their favorite Austen novel. Why do you think that’s true? Is that true for you? Why after 200 years, is this novel still so popular?
2. Jane is the eldest and is supposed to be the most beautiful of the Bennet daughters. Could Jane be the main heroine of P&P? Besides Jane Bennet, Jane Fairfax in Emma is also named Jane. Both of them are beautiful, lovely and everything desirable. What do you think of that, considering the author’s first name? J
3. Compare and contrast male and female attitudes towards marriage in the novel. Think about Wickham, Charlotte Lucas and Lizzie. What kind of relationship between a man and a woman did Jane Austen idealize?
4. In what ways was Lydia’s outcome predictable? What hints did you see? Lydia and Wickham pose a danger to the Bennet family as long as they are unmarried and unchecked. But as a married couple, with little improvement in their behavior, this danger vanishes. What do you think of that?
5. What are Wickham’s motivations for engaging himself to Georgiana? For seducing Lydia? Compare him to Mr. Willoughby of Sense & Sensibility.
6. For you, who is the most interesting character in the novel?
7. Not everyone in P&P marries. Jane Austen suggests that in order to marry well a woman must be pretty, respectable, and have money. In the world of Pride and Prejudice, which of these is most important? Who else in that society is likely to make a good match? Think of Caroline Bingley, Georgiana Darcy, Kitty Bennet, Mary Bennet, Miss DeBourgh, etc.
8. Was Charlotte Lucas right to marry Mr. Collins? Why and why not? With Charlotte Lucas, was Jane Austen making a social criticism of her era’s view of marriage?
9. Would Mary have married Mr. Collins had he thought to ask her? Would they make a better match?
10. Is Mr. Bennet a positive or negative figure? Is he a good father and husband?
11. P&P was originally titled First Impressions. Discuss both titles. What role do first impressions play in P&P? Do any of the characters change during the course of the novel, or is it our perspective that changes? To you, which characters remained the same?