Austen would not likely be surprised at recent findings reported here at The Atlantic that for the middle class today which is approximately the class of the Bennets in Pride and Prejudice the difference between a happy marriage and a miserable one is something decidedly unromantic: chores. You Really Do Marry a Family, Not Just a Person A survey in the November issue of Glamour found that the majority of men polled by the magazine said that they judge a woman by her family.
This truth universally acknowledged forms one of the great obstacles between Elizabeth and Darcy, a point revealed in the explanatory letter Darcy writes to Elizabeth following her refusal of one of the most infamous marriage proposals in all of literature. Bennet], by your three younger sisters, and occasionally even by your father. Pardon me. It pains me to offend you. These familial objections are, of course, overcome in time for the happily ever after. But Darcy has recognized, wisely, that he is marrying into a family and he does so with open eyes and readiness—as much as that is possible—to accept that fact of life.
Missed Communication Is Miscommunication In other words, silence is the voice of complacency.
Experts even have a name for this tendency we have to think our communication is stronger and clearer than it actually is: signal amplification bias. Elizabeth would not—and did not—settle for the same choice. But despite their being the best of friends, Charlotte and Elizabeth are not the same. Likewise, no two marriages are the same.
Nor need they be: Trying to force a one-size-fits-all formula on individual marriages invites disaster. A couple I know who are part of a conservative religious community, for example, tried for the first decade of their marriage to conform to roles they thought were expected by their community and failed miserably.
Or a couple on the opposite end of the spectrum, for whom love means never saying the mortgage is late? Theirs is a match crowned by the twin laurels of romance and reason. A Good Marriage Challenges Both Partners to Grow Despite being well-matched in both intellect and passion for each other, Elizabeth and Darcy have to undergo painful chastening, admit their errors, enlarge their perspectives, and see matters through the eyes of the other before they can love each other.
And although the novel ends, as all classical comedies do, with their felicitous union, we know enough of their strong minds and robust personalities to perceive that challenges will lie ahead. But we are certain that Elizabeth and Darcy are, like iron that sharpens iron, equally matched.
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Their marriage provides the best marriage lesson of all: Marry someone whose love will develop you into a better person. We want to hear what you think about this article.
Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters theatlantic. Penguin Books. Bingley without their knowing. When he reveals to Mrs. Eager to learn more, Mrs.
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Bennet and the girls question Mr. Bennet incessantly. A few days later, Mr. Bingley returns the visit, though he does not meet Mr. The Bennets invite him to dinner shortly afterward, but he is called away to London. Soon, however, he returns to Netherfield Park with his two sisters, his brother-in-law, and a friend named Darcy.
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Bingley and his guests go to a ball in the nearby town of Meryton. The Bennet sisters attend the ball with their mother. The eldest daughter, Jane, dances twice with Bingley. At the end of the evening, the Bennet women return to their house, where Mrs. Bennet regales her husband with stories from the evening until he insists that she be silent.
Upstairs, Jane relates to Elizabeth her surprise that Bingley danced with her twice, and Elizabeth replies that Jane is unaware of her own beauty. The arrival of Mr. Bingley and news of his fortune is the event that sets the novel in motion. He delivers the prospect of a marriage of wealth and good connections for the eager Bennet girls.
The opening sentence has a subtle, unstated significance.
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