great expectations

great expectations

The Inner Journey
Part 2: Miss Havisham: Chapter 49

Mrs Havisham plays a significant role in Great Expectations and is one of the more complex characters. She is a grim lady with no expectations in her life, however towards the end of the novel she has a sudden change in heart that concludes her Inner Journey.

Chapter 49 begins with Pip returning to the Satis house. The mood of this scene is established by introducing the darkness and the imagery of death. Dickens uses the imagery of darkness and light to intensify the mood in this novel. The darkness adds to the novels gothic feeling and emphasises that Pip is feeling lost. Imagery of death foreshadows Miss Havisham’s death when cathedral chimes are compared to “funeral music”, and the words “graves” and “sadder” are used to add a gothic feel. Imagery of light appears again when Pip enters the Satis house “The lighted candle stood in the dark passage”. This creates the image of a haunted house and shows that it is old and dark much like Miss Havisham. Contrasting the darkness is the candle which represents the little goodness she has left in her heart. Pip notices a change in the atmosphere “there was an air of utter loneliness upon her”.There is no longer a feeling of dominance and excellence showing that Miss Havisham no longer feels superior towards Pip. A metaphor is used to show how Miss Havisham’s heart is full of hatred. “I want to show you that I am not all stone. But perhaps you can never believe, now, that there is anything human in my heart?” Her attempt to redeem herself can be admired as she is wanting to prove to Pip that she is capable of loving.

Juxtaposition is used when Miss Havisham drops to the floor and begs for forgiveness from Pip.
Miss Havisham is higher in social class than Pip therefore her actions contrast how she is meant to behave towards him. Pip thinks back to a time were “her poor heart was young and fresh and whole” this contrasts how she has changed and the...

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