What is it about romance movies that makes girls go into a love struck frenzy? A good love story makes girls rethink everything that they want in their “perfect relationship” and their “dream man,” however, most movies nowadays don’t seem to teach these valuable life lessons, but Pride and Prejudice does the opposite. Here are 5 things that Pride and Prejudice teach us about true love.
1. You Don’t Have To Show Your “Goods” To Get A Man’s Attention.
What most romance movies now portray, is that if you want your dream “hunk” to really notice you, you need to show off your “goods,” but is that really the case? Or, is dressing modestly the thing that is going to get you the most attention, and the attention that you actually want? In a blog post called, “The Real Reasons For Dressing Modestly,” Lynette, the writer, makes several claims about why we should dress modestly and how it affects women and young girls. With regards to the media, she points out that “the media is continuously feeding women and girls the message that good looks and perfect bodies determine happiness and success.” Most women think that showing off everything that the good Lord gave them is how they get men, which will then make them feel beautiful, but Lynette argues that with the idea that dressing immodestly actually makes girls feel more insecure about themselves and “that this idea is something we need to address because women are worth infinitely more than the sum of their body parts.”
While watching Pride and Prejudice, did you ever see someone dressing immodestly- no. And while some of you might be thinking that was just the fashion back then, I would ask you, when did modesty ever leave? It wasn’t until movies and media showed people with everything showing, leaving nothing to the imagination. And because that’s all that we see, women started to follow and dress how celebrities dressed. But Pride and Prejudice shows us that you can be covered up while still getting the attention of absolute hunks like Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley. The two of them are the perfect examples of giving women the right attention for the right reasons, and having an epic love story. They showed us that they loved these women because of who they are, not because of their bodies, and THAT is what we should all aim for. So, maybe the saying is true, modest is hottest.
2. It’s OK To Not Be Good At Everything
We live in a world where we are constantly being looked at, through social media, at school, at work, etc. And, of course, we all want to look perfect in front of our crushes, boyfriends, or even husbands, and movies today show these girls that have everything going on. First off, there is no such thing as “perfect,” but yet, everyone is obsessed with that idea, and frankly, it’s exhausting trying to be. Molly Donovan writes exactly about this topic and says that “Elizabeth Bennet, the novel’s heroine, is interesting, not because she’s good at everything, but precisely because she isn’t.” Donovan, recalls that towards the beginning of the movie, Darcy tells Elizabeth Bennet that to him, an “accomplished” women can sing, draw, play music, and dance, and “rather than pretend she possesses these qualities - or feel ashamed that she doesn’t - Elizabeth accepts who she is.” Instead of trying to reach “perfection” and live up to other people's standards, Elizabeth is passionate about a few things and focus on those, and as a result, Darcy falls in love with her because she is unique, does her own thing, and sticks to what she believes in.
We were all born with different traits that make us who we are, and not one of us is exactly the same, yet, in today’s world it seems that everyone is trying to be someone they aren’t in order to impress another. That is why we should all strive to be more like Elizabeth Bennett, she breaks the status quo, she is her OWN person, so we should be our own person. The world would be a very boring place if everyone was the same. We shouldn’t stress about changing ourselves so we attract the right person, because if you are true to yourself, the right person will find you. We have certain characteristics, and our perfect person will have certain characteristics that will fit perfectly together. So embrace who you are and love yourself, so your Mr. Darcy can love you too.
3. Don’t Settle For Less Than The Best
Every girl deserves the best of the best man, everyone deserves a Mr. Darcy! But in today's day in age, we don’t like to wait for things, we are in a time where we want, what we want, at the moment we want and movies don’t help with that. We watch all these movies with with these dreamy, charming, lovable perfect unrealistic relationships and it makes us want one. But that doesn’t mean we should jump into a relationship with anyone just because we want one, we need to wait for the right person. The author of the article, “What we can learn from Pride and Prejudice” reminds us that before Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy were a couple, Elizabeth had another offer of marriage, her strange, dorky cousin Mr. Collins. And when Mr. Collins proposes to her, “she didn't agree to the proposal even for money, and that was a good idea, because Mr. Collins is basically a tragic wimp, living as a subordinate of his aunt.” The story would have been very, very different if Elizabeth settled and married Mr. Collins, Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy wouldn’t have ended up together, and Pride and Prejudice would basically cease to exist.
It all boils down to confidence, and becoming independent, knowing that you don’t always have to have a man. Elizabeth, despite her family's desperate attempts to marry her off, was happy being by herself, because she knew what kind of a man she wanted. Romance movies get into women's heads and tells us that we need a man, and if we don’t then something must be wrong with us. But, there is NOTHING wrong with being single, what is wrong, is being in relationships that aren’t healthy, and won’t go anywhere. It’s time to be your own person and wait for Mr. Right. Because whenever you aren’t looking for something is usually when you’ll find it.
4. It’s Ok To Challenge Each Other
It seems like in movies, the two characters fall in love with each other so fast and so hard that we begin to think that’s how we will fall in love too. Although that may be the case for some people, it’s usually not that way for most, because love isn’t just romance and kissing. Justin Petrisek, the author of “5 Things Pride and Prejudice Can Teach About Men,” says love is about two different people who love who are trying to live with others flaws. Even though at the end of the movie, Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth have a “happy union, we know that their strong minds and opinions will continue to challenge each other and make each other better.” Throughout the movie Mr. Darcy thought that he wanted this “perfect” women, but once he met Elizabeth, he realized that he “found a woman who loves him for who he is and whose love will challenge him to be worthy of her love.”
Just because you’re in love doesn’t mean that life will all be cupcakes and rainbows, we are all made different and that doesn’t change once we find the person that we love. Typically, movies end with everyone happy, and life is good, so we automatically think that their relationship is beyond perfect. However, movies don’t show what happens to the characters after they end up together. Going back to what Petrisek said, we know the Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth will continue to challenge each other because that is why they fell in love. So challenge your man, and give him the opportunity to show his love for you.
5. Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover
In the article “5 Things I Learned From Elizabeth Bennett” by Charlotte Mooney, she explains how sometimes your first impression of people can be wrong. Mooney relates this to the title of the movie, Pride and Prejudice, where Elizabeth's prejudice and Darcy's pride cloud their judgments of each other when they first meet. She goes on to say how if we all just stop judging people after our first encounter with them, how many more amazing relationships would we have with others?
Our society today is all about judging other people, and trying to show others how we are more superior than the people around us, that is why Pride and Prejudice is the BEST movie, because it shows us that we judge others wrongly. We are humans, and we do make mistakes, we are not always right about people and we don’t need to be right off the bat. Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy made mistakes but they then realized the error of their ways and fixed them. They gave second chances and that is something that we all need to do. We need to not set unreachable standards for others that we don’t set upon ourselves, and we need to forgive and and give others second chances so they will give us second chances in return.
There might be some people that didn’t take away anything from this list, and that is ok. I am not the best writer and can’t possibly convey all the lessons learned in Pride and Prejudice like Jane Austen can or Joe Wright, the director, can. So i would urge you to watch the movie again and look for the lessons. But, if you did learn something from this list, I would also urge you to re-watch it so you can learn the deeper meanings.