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Coming of Age in Great Expectations Essay


Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, is a novel about a little boy named Pip who throughout the book becomes a man. His family name is Pirrip but when he was much younger he pronounced it as Pip. So now it has become his nickname which everyone calls him. Because both of his parents died, he has no other choice but to live with his brother-in-law, Joe Gargery, and his sister, Mrs. Joe Gargery in Kent. Here, he is miserable because he is being raised by hand. Pips uncle decides to take Pip to play at Satis House one day. He meets an eccentric old woman by the name of Mrs. Havisham. She has all the clocks stopped at a certain time and wore a wedding dress everywhere in the house. He also meets a beautiful young woman, about his age. Her name is Estella. Unfortunately, she treats him like dirt. She tells him unnecessary things such as you have rough hands, thick boots, and you are common. This deeply hurt Pip. But thankfully, he gets the opportunity to leave. He doesnt really want to leave Joe, but he knows that they will meet up later in life. He is wanted to become a gentleman. But hes only doing it to become worthy of Estella. Before he was given the chance to leave, he worked as an apprentice with Joe. He struggled with school work but always made ends meet no matter what. Finally that will be over because he is taken to London. He is doing well; until he finds out hes in knee-high debt. He has also experienced his sister being physically attacked. He got a letter a little later in London, explaining how his sister passed away. Orlick was the main suspect but got away with it. Pip met up with Orlick much later; however Orlick was trying to kill him. But before this he also met up with Magwitch, the convict from years ago. He ends up living with Pip for a while, and a lot of suspense is being built in London because Magwitch is wanted by the government to be thrown in jail.

During the process of the escape, Pip puts together that Compeyson, Magwitchs previous partner in crime, was the man who left Mrs. Havisham at the alter and is the reason why she is so bitter. He also thinks that Molly, Jaggers servant, is Estellas Mother and Magwitch is Estellas father! He is right. He is very excited to inform Estella, but finds out she is soon to be married to Drummle. Pip is heartbroken. Mrs. Havisham begs for Pips forgiveness, for making Estella so bitter, but it was too late. Later that night, Miss Havisham caught on fire because of her fireplace and later died. He is left speechless because all the people who played a major role in his life were dying. This includes Magwitch who thankfully died at peace. Later, Pip is informed that Orlick was later sent to jail for robbing Pips Uncle and Biddy has taught Joe how to read. Pip realizes he wants Biddys hand in marriage, but by the time he tries to tell her, Joe tells Pip they are already engaged. Pip goes back to London to work with Herbert, one of his closest friends, who really helps Pip out. Years later, he finds Estella in the ruined garden at Satis House. Drummle died and his cruelty has softened Estellas coldness. Pip and Estella leave the garden together, hand in hand.

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