Being a Gentleman – Great Expectations
Great Education Many describe Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations as a Bildungsroman ” a novel tracing the education and spiritual growth of a young hero, in this case Philip Pirrip, better known as Pip. Pip’s thoughts on education change throughout the course of the story, beginning with idealistic views of becoming a gentleman and ending with a deeper, more intellectual perspective of being a gentleman. After meeting the wealthy and once elegant Miss Havisham, Pip becomes ashamed of his life as a lowly peasant and son ofa blacksmith. He believes Miss
Havisham and Estella are better than he is, and he yearns to be a member of the elite. This commences his longing for an education. At first, he attempts to learn on his own, but realizes It Is a useless effort. Then, on the day young PIP Is told he will be moving to London so that he may become a gentleman, he dreams start to become reality. During PIP’s childhood and adolescence, he believes that the sole purpose of his education Is to become an intelligent social elite. According to Pip, the distinguished members of society with education are perhaps better than the less fortunate.
Sadly, that belief becomes a part of his personality. On his Journey toward nobility, he disregards his immediate family and closest friends. He ignores his beloved Joe and Is even embarrassed to be in his presence. Every time Joes Insists on vlsltlng his old pal, Pip attempts either to sabotage the trip completely, or to shorten Joe’s stay with him as much as possible. In the midst of it all, he becomes more and more obsessed with the beautiful, coldhearted Estella. As PIP matures, he slowly loses his boastful attitude. He helps his best friend,
Herbert Pocket, start a business, even obtalnlng money from Miss Havisham to Invest in Herbert’s business, without Herbert’s knowledge. In addition, he gradually loses interest in Estella, realizing Biddy is the right woman for him. He goes home only to discover that Joe and Biddy married. However, the evolved PIP feels happiness for them, while he silently suffers for himself. By the end of the novel Pip learns that there is much more to life than social rank. He is aware that family and friends are more significant than money and power.
In he closing chapters as Pip is planning Magwitch’s escape, he knows the Inheritance from his benefactor will cease to exist If Magwitch’s Identity Is exposed. Yet, he still fights to help the old convict who insured his quest to become a gentleman. After the plan fails, Pip becomes overwhelmed with sickness, and it is Joe who arrives to nurse the disease-stricken Pip back to health. It is at this moment where Pip realizes what constitutes being a gentleman, and what does not. Joe, the person who cares for PIP the most, hsd the least amount of education roves to be the true gentleman all along.