Darcy and Elizabeth overcome pride and prejudice, learning not to judge people too quickly. Lady Catherine (inflexible) and Mrs Bennet (constantly changeable) cannot learn. True pride involves responsibility (Darcy).
Pride and Prejudice (Grades 9–1)
Austen shows realistic attitude to money (Charlotte). Characters defined by income (Bingley). Source of income affects social class (land valued over trade). Money equals power (Lady Catherine).
Novel portrays male-dominated society; marriage women’s only means of financial security. Women lead limited lives but can make choices about attitudes and behaviour (Jane/Elizabeth vs Kitty/Lydia).
Charlotte chooses marriage without love (sensible). Lydia opts for love without marriage (shocking). Elizabeth and Darcy learn mutual respect as well as experiencing strong physical attraction.
Public behaviour (e.g. at a ball) is judged using strict social codes and conventions. Sympathetic characters are sensitive to others’ feelings (Jane), unsympathetic characters are not (Lady Catherine).