Miss Havisham & Estella: Was Miss Havisham a Good Mother? by Tarah G. on Prezi
Estella Havisham is a significant character in the Charles Dickens novel, Great. In this lesson, we'll learn about Estella Havisham, the heroine of Charles Dickens' 'Great Expectations.' We'll explore her relationship with Miss. Everything you ever wanted to know about Estella Havisham in Great Expectations, written by masters of this stuff just for you.
Dickens sees the valuing of money and status over all else as a primary drive in society, which is dominated by the mercantile middle class. Miss Havisham and her decayed house have another relationship; it parallels the diseased state of her mind. By stopping time, symbolized by the clocks all reading twenty to nine, Miss Havisham has stopped her life, which thereby becomes death-in-life. By wilfully stopping her life at a moment of pain and humiliation, she indulges her own anger, self-pity, and desire for revenge; she imagines her death as "the finished curse" upon the man who jilted her page In her revenge, which destroys her life, she is like a child who hurts itself in its anger at someone else.
The decay around her also represents her relationship with others. Her relationships are symbiotic, as we discussed in class. Her relatives try to feed off her wealth, and she feeds off their envy and subservience. The feeding relationship is symbolized by the mice, which eat the bridal cake and which she claims have gnawed at her heart.
She even imagines herself laid out on the table for their consumption after her death. Miss Havisham feeds off both Estella and Pip to achieve her own ends.
The feeding or attempting to feed off of others for self-gratification is one manifestation of the dehumanization or depersonalization that runs through the novel; repeatedly characters use others as objects, to enhance their own prestige and self-image, like Pumblechook constantly taking credit and Mrs. Joe raising Pip "by hand.
Pip calls Pumblechook "that basest of swindlers"; taking credit for events to which he has no connection, he takes Pip "into custody, with a right of patronage that left all his former criminality far behind" page Because of its dehumanizing emphasis on wealth and status, society itself is implicitly accused of criminality.
As the cruelties and destructive consequences of society's values reveal themselves, society is condemned as criminal. Estella complies, and they play a card game, Beggar My Neighbor. Later, Miss Havisham explicitly urges Pip to love Estella: If she favours you, love her. If she wounds you, love her. If she tears your heart to pieces—and as it gets older and stronger—it will tear deeper—love her, love her, love her!
I adopted her to be loved.
I bred her and educated her to be loved. I developed her into what she is, that she might be loved. It is blind devotion, unquestioning self-humiliation, utter submission, trust and belief against yourself and against the whole world, giving up your whole heart and soul to the smiter—as I did! What kind of love is she describing if the feelings she describes are indeed love?
- The relationship between Ms. Havisham and Estella- Great Expectations.
Do Pip's feelings for Estella and his relationship to her resemble the "love" Miss Havisham describes? Is he, like Miss Havisham, obsessed by his "love"?
Would it be imposing a modern concept onto Pip to say that he is addicted to love? Though Pip is aware that the love she refers to sounds like hate, despair, revenge, and death, a curse rather than a blessing, he perseveres in his attachment for Estella.
His attachment had and continues to have adverse effects on him. Pip, both in his dream of having great expectations to win Estella and in the realization of those expectations, is passive; he waits for others and for events to act upon him and give him direction, meaning, and purpose. She even had the clocks in her mansion stopped at twenty minutes to nine: Time passed and Miss Havisham had her lawyer, Mr.
Pip, Estella, and Miss Havisham
Jaggersadopt a daughter for her. I had been shut up in these rooms a long time I don't know how long; you know what time the clocks keep herewhen I told him that I wanted a little girl to rear and love, and save from my fate.
I had first seen him when I sent for him to lay this place waste for me; having read of him in the newspapers, before I and the world parted. He told me that he would look about him for such an orphan child.
One night he brought her here asleep, and I called her Estella. From protection to revenge[ edit ] While Miss Havisham's original goal was to prevent Estella from suffering as she had at the hands of a man, it changed as Estella grew older: At first I meant no more. But as she grew, and promised to be very beautiful, I gradually did worse, and with my praises, and with my jewels, and with my teachings, and with this figure of myself always before her a warning to back and point my lessons, I stole her heart away and put ice in its place.
While Estella was still a child, Miss Havisham began casting about for boys who could be a testing ground for Estella's education in breaking the hearts of men as vicarious revenge for Miss Havisham's pain.
Pipthe narrator, is the eventual victim; and Miss Havisham readily dresses Estella in jewels to enhance her beauty and to exemplify all the more the vast social gulf between her and Pip.
When, as a young adult, Estella leaves for France to receive education, Miss Havisham eagerly asks him, "Do you feel you have lost her?
[Miss Havisham's Objectification of Estella]
Miss Havisham begs Pip for forgiveness. Until you spoke to [Estella] the other day, and until I saw in you a looking-glass that showed me what I once felt myself, I did not know what I had done. What have I done! After Pip leaves, Miss Havisham's dress catches on fire from her fireplace. Pip rushes back in and saves her. However, she has suffered severe burns to the front of her torso she is laid on her backup to the throat.