My A to Z of Pride and Prejudice – Letter B

A2Z-Pride-and-Prejudice

(Plus IWSG)

Here’s another April A to Z Blogging Challenge post where I join more than 2,000 bloggers posting each day (except Sundays) of April as we work our way through the Alphabet.

My theme is “What I Love About Pride and Prejudice.” If you enjoy Pride and Prejudice I hope you’ll join me on this run through the 26 things I love about the story.

After you’ve read my post, please click the link above or the A to Z badge in my side bar to view what the other bloggers are saying.

B

B is for Bennets (i.e. Mr. & Mrs.)

 

“Her father, captivated by youth and beauty, and that appearance of good humour which youth and beauty generally give, had married a woman whose weak understanding and illiberal mind had very early in their marriage put an end to all real affection for her.”   Jane Austen – Pride & Prejudice

MrandMrsB

Mr. and Mrs. Bennet from BBC 1995 Pride and Prejudice Mini-series (my favorite version)

I can never think of Mr. and Mrs. Bennet without shaking my head. They seem such a mismatched pair. Twenty-three years of marriage hasn’t brought them any real understanding or appreciation of each other. As the parents to our protagonist and her four sisters, they are the legs on which the Bennet family stand. Precariously.

Mr. Bennet is a gentleman landowner, though not wealthy, with a house full of daughters and no son to inherit. It suits him to sit alone in his study reading the day away from the worry and noise of the house (hmmm…I wouldn’t mind that either.  “Hill!, bring me some tea!”). He fell for his yet to be wife not for her brains, but her looks.

Mr. and Mrs. Bennet from BBC 1995 Pride and Prejudice Mini-series, yet again.

Mr. and Mrs. Bennet from BBC 1995 Pride and Prejudice Mini-series, yet again.

Because they never had sons, Mrs. Bennet’s object in life is to find suitable husbands for her daughters. Beyond that she frets for her future when the house could be entailed away. This often throws her into such a fit that she locks herself away in her room.

I must say that neither are ideal parents. Far from it. He seems to worry none at all for his children and she makes that worry her life’s mission. It’s their predicament that sets up necessary circumstances in the story and their banter keeps me laughing.

Do you have any thoughts on Mr. and Mrs. Bennet? Are they humorous or sort of pitiful?

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This post is to serve dual purpose today. Since it is the first Wednesday of the month, it is also time to post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. IWSG is a great group of people who offer support in your writing. My biggest struggle right now is the same as usual…getting everything done.

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Categories: Thoughts, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

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21 thoughts on “My A to Z of Pride and Prejudice – Letter B

  1. For sure, you wouldn’t want parents like them, well maybe mostly the problem is with Mrs. Bennet LOL. But for the book’s purposes, I think they add a comical touch.

    • It just dawned on me how much like my own father Mr. Bennet was. My dad was always off in his office away from his five daughters, though there were also two sons. Luckily, my mom was NOTHING like Mrs. Bennet.

      • Well Mr. Bennet isn’t all that bad. He has his moments. It’s been a while since I read Pride and Prejudice though so I may be remembering the BBC version of him.

      • I think he does pretty well considering the people he has to put up with in his house.

      • So true!! I’d probably lock myself in a room as well all day long if I have to live with all the ruckus of the Bennet women lol.

  2. Hi there! Happy IWSG post day. 🙂 I see you’re also doing the A to Z challenge. Your Pride and Prejudice theme is a great one! Have a blast with it! I’m commenting though my FB, but my blog is http://cfitewrite.blogspot.com.

  3. I prefer to think of Mr. Bennet as portrayed by Hugh Bonneville in Lost in Austen. It’s how I pictured him in my head as a kid reading Austen…loving his family but just on the verge of breaking under the stress of Mrs. Bennett’s nerves and the hormones of five teenage girls. But I always thought he could be pushed too far and it was nice to see that come out (even if it was in a variation of an Austen).

    • I own the Lost In Austen DVD and it was on a constant loop in my house for a while : ).

      Hugh Bonneville was wonderful (as he is in everything, especially Downton Abbey) as Mr. Bennet.

      I know it was hard for Mr. Bennet to be around all that silliness. It wasn’t that the house was full of girls…it was silly girls…except Elizabeth and Jane.

  4. O refuse to stress myself out about getting things done. I heard a saying that even when your die, your inbox will have something in it.

    • If I let myself get stressed out about not getting things done I would be in a constant state of anxiety.

      I like that quote about the inbox.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Mr. Bennet always made me laugh.

  6. Thanks for the blog. I wouldn’t say the father “seems to worry none at all for his children.” He seems to like very much Elizabeth, mainly for her sharp intellect. He’s so worried for Lydia when she elopes with Wickham that it’s one of the few episodes when he’s lost his usual propensity for humorous quips. I suspect love is to be worked out after marriage. Mr. Bennet loves his wife, and his pain is in being unable to connect with her on an intellectual level.

    • I of course believe he loves his girls (even his wife), though he thinks them silly. He’d just rather not bother with them if he can help it. The bulk of them are tiresome. When Elizabeth pleaded with him to not let Lydia run off to Brighton in pursuit of the officers, he would have her go enjoy herself when it was “so little expense or inconvenience to her family.” Lydia certainly could have used some parenting.

      Thanks for commenting. I enjoy the give and take.

  7. Liz Blocker

    I think they’re humorous AND pitiful. I have to say that Mrs. Bennet drives me crazy, even as I laugh at her, and I have a lot more sympathy for Mr. Bennet – but both he and you are right; he didn’t worry enough. I always respected that he figured that out later on, and was able to admit it. I DO love the actors who played them in the BBC version – which is forever and always the ONLY version in my mind, cuz I get loyal like that 🙂

  8. Oh yes. I feel sort of sorry for Kitty after the whole Lydia / Wickham incident. Mr. Bennet is going to keep her locked up, good and tight.

    BBC 1995 is the one I’m partial to myself. I have it on VHS (wonder where I put that?) and on DVD.

    Thanks for your comments Liz. I always enjoy them.

  9. I enjoyed reading Pride and Prejudices and watching several film adaptions, but I have never analyzed it to the extent you have on this blog. I like your assessment of Mr. Bennett, and his inclination to marry an attractive woman who did not share his interests reminds me of many men through the history of the world. Once I met a guy who lived in Miami and he told me it was really hard for him to find a girlfriend down there because everyone was so into looks, and he just wanted a decent woman with a kind heart. Then he kept talking, and he revealed he could not date a woman over 120 pounds because she was not active outdoors, because I weigh more than that, and I am active. Oh well, makes me think men and women who marry only for looks do not think as much as they claim to.

    • Oh the irony. In want of a decent, outdoorsy, size 2 woman (who would likely find him wanting…just saying). It puts me in mind of what Elizabeth said to Darcy after he and Caroline Bingley describe in detail an accomplished woman.

      “I am no longer surprised at your knowing only six accomplished women. I rather wonder now at your knowing any.”

  10. I think that there are more parents like Mr. and Mrs. Bennet than we care to admit! Perhaps they really were in love when they were younger, but life and time can sometimes separate people rather than bring them together. Not that Mr. and Mrs. Bennet don’t still love each other, sometimes it’s just in a different way than most pop culture portrays it. Just my two cents. : )

    • Affection and passion are two different things, right? Passion fades, so you have to have affection and respect to keep the marriage strong.

      I also agree that there are a lot of parents today who are either under involved or smothering their kids. It can be hard to keep a happy medium.

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