Pip’s Love and Family Relation in “Great Expectations” Summary

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This essay is based on the life of Pip, who is the main character of the book Great Expectation by Charles Dickens. This essay contains several themes such as loyalty, friendship, love, and the relation of Pip in the community. Great Expectations is the story of Pip, an orphan adopted by a blacksmith’s family. Pip is a fortunate boy and has high expectations of love and to become gentleman for love. In Pip’s life, he faces several problems and makes several mistakes, leading him to fail in achieving his expectations. Despite all the failures, he learns to get back up, and the most important lesson to find happiness and love. He learns the meaning of friendship and the meaning of love. He generates a capacity to become a gentleman.

This essay provides an argument about love, relationship, and the hard life of Pip, which is directly connected to a character from the book Ethics, and College student life by Kenneth A. Strike and Pamela A. Moss. People born and learn everything from their family and the surrounding. His every step are the reflection of his culture and society. There is a quotation in the Ethics and college student book, they said that “ Some communities do shape us. This likely to be true of a religious or ethnic community, especially if we were born into it” (Strike and Moss, 111) If one talks about Pip, Pip is raised by his sister Mrs. Joe and Mr. Joe. Pip never valued his family and love, which lead him to fail in achieving his dreams and expectation. We did not blame of Pip only for this behavior because communities and family are those who shape us our behaviors and habits.

An important aspect of a child’s life is his/ her family. From the first moments of life, children are dependent upon his/her family but in the life of Pip, he missed his parents. However, he was surrounded by many people who cared about him like their own son. His sister and his brother-in-law raised to grow up him up, but Pip never understood the emotion behind it. Even tough Pip was a young boy and had many expectations, he did not have manners. He would behave weirdly in front of others and disrespected his elders. Joe was like a Godfather to him, because Joe raised him since his parent’s death.

Pip did not understand the love from Joe and was very disrespectful to Joe. One time when Pip is leaving Joe, he said: ‘You may be sure, dear Joe,’ I went on, after we had shaken hands, that I shall never forget you'(Dickens, 116). He is young but he needs to show some respect to Joe because Joe is the father-like figure for him. After Pip leaves Joe, he meets many people and many families, friends, and caretakers, but he never feels the sentiment of a family. Magwitch (one host dad of Pip) treated Pip like a son, but Pip did not necessarily require the sentiment. Pip doesn’t understand the value of family and he didn’t fit in the future plan of becoming a gentleman.

This can be seen from his conversation with Magwitch; “Look here, Pip. I’m your second father. You’re my son—more to me nor any son. I’ve put away money, only for you to spend’ (Dickens, 241). This fatherly feeling towards Pip does not seem to be relevant, because Pip did not understand the feelings of all those who loved him. It shows that Pip has an expectation of getting love, but lacks in manners, which a child needs to have. Pip’s behaviors are unethical because of his attitudes of being superior when getting money. When Pip gets money and becomes rich, he humiliates Joel, who raised him since he was a child. He blames Joel for Estella’s rejection, because Joel is an illiterate person, and he teaches wrong ideas to Pip.

In Great Expectations, there is a strong connection between love and expectation. The story draws the old ancient love and affection of Pip and Joel. Pip’s love toward Estella is a craving desire, and he is stunned by the beauty of Estella. Estella is a very pretty girl, and many people wanted her, so he needed to be very careful about proposing her. Unfortunately, Pip does not have any knowledge of proposing to a girl. He proposed Estella by trying to command in his trembling voice like this, ‘Estella, you know I love you. You know that I have loved you long and dearly’ (Dickens, 270).

However, Estella ends up marrying Bentley Drummle (another character in Great expectation), whom she loved dearly, but Bentley doesn’t show his love for a very long period. As a result, Bentley Drummle divorced with Estella immediately after satisfying his wants. Pip thinks he that his love towards Estella is true, but he thinks his loves towards Estella in a different way. Pip shows his love towards Estella like this, “the unqualified truth is, that when I loved Estella with the love of a man, I loved her simply because I found her irresistible. Once for all; I knew to my sorrow, often and often, if not always, that I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be.

Once for all; I loved her nonetheless because I knew it, and it had no more influence in restraining me, than if I had devoutly believed her to be human perfection” (Dickens,179). This quotation, undoubtedly shows that Pip loved Estella far beyond the reason of lust. When Pip saw Estella he always feels her being omnipresent. It means he has a deep love with Estela, but one can’t assume that Pip loved Estella truly, and will not betray Estella as Bently did. Despite saying all this, his proposal towards Estella is turned down, because of his lack of gentleness.

In the book, Ethics and College Life, there are many case studies that explain the behavior of college students There are case studies about the misunderstanding about a roommate, there is a case of a failed relationship, there is a case of ethical disclaimer and many cases that similar to Pip’s life. Students are a learner and all learner are students. People who study are a student. Likewise, Pip who is studying about family, love, society, and friendship is also a student. He went to London to study to become a gentleman. He learns the importance of family. He studies the importance of love and money. He fights is his own friends, he hurts Joel and he misbehaves with many people because he is innocent. He does not know good manners and is still learning.

So, Pip is a student. Even though Pip fails in this expectation but he never afraid and came back from his decision. In the book Ethics and Collage student life, they explain the nature of some student of not to give up, for an example, Brain(Student; one character in Book) gave one last try and said: “I don’t feel comfortable putting them in little niches like the ‘trends and categories’ we’ve to talk about they’d too complex for that, they’re individual’s.” (strike and moss 88). From school, the student learns to fight with the problem and attempt for better.

Pip wants Estella because she is pretty, but Pip is still a teenager. He has many desire with Estella and to fulfill his desire he becomes ready to change himself. He broke his other relationships and moved to another place to learn good manners. This shows the power of love and desire. If people have a strong desire then they can do anything as Pip did to change himself into a gentleman, because he has a desire to marry Estella. Joel is Pip’s best friend and host dad, he did everything for Pip, but Pip leaves and blames him because of Love. This is the power of emotion. It might not be ethical from the viewers perspective, but it is a good idea for him because his main goal is to fulfill his desire with Estella.

Thus, the main thing in human life is emotion. People perform activities based on their wants and emotion. For example, if someone goes to college, it is because s/he has the feeling to study and get a nice job. If people want to migrant then s/he wants a better life or they didn’t like the place where they lived before. All these activities are connected with human emotions. Emotions have very strong power, which reverses human thinking and behaviors.It can generate enemies, or create friends.

Works Cited

  1. Dickens, Charles, and Edgar Rosenberg. Charles Dickens Great Expectations: Authoritative Text, Backgrounds, Contexts, Criticism. W.W. Norton, 1999.
  2. Strike, Kenneth A. and Pamela A. Moss. Ethics and College Student Life: A Case Study Approach. 3rd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008.m

Cite this paper

Pip’s Love and Family Relation in “Great Expectations” Summary. (2021, Oct 26). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/pips-love-and-family-relation-in-great-expectations/



How is family presented in Great Expectations?
Great Expectations presents family in a few different lights. The first is through Pip's relationship with his sister and brother-in-law. The second is through Miss Havisham and Estella's relationship.
What is the relationship between Pip and his sister?
Pip and his sister have a difficult relationship. His sister is bossy and often mistreats Pip.
Who is Pip's love?
Pip's love is Estella. Estella is the adopted daughter of Miss Havisham.
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