Great Expectations Essay

Submitted By Eli-Leinkram
Words: 2761
Pages: 12

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Leah Leinkram
Brief summary of the plot in your own words:
Great Expectations tells the narrative of a young orphan named Pip, who lives with his sister and her husband; Mr and Mrs Joe Gargery, who works as a blacksmith. They live in a small village, near the church where Pip’s parents and siblings are buried. The story opens on Christmas Eve, with Pip visiting his parents at the graveyard. He is confronted by an escaped convict who threatens to kill him unless he is brought food the next morning, which Pip does. That night, whilst having Christmas dinner, soldiers come to the house in the need of Joe’s blacksmith services. After Joe finishes to assist them, they set out to capture an escaped convict; the same one that threatened Pip.
Time passes, and Pip is a little older now, but still a young boy. One day, Mr Pumblechook, a friend of the family’s comes to the house and tells Pip that he is wanted at Miss Havisham’s house to play games for her entertainment. Miss Havisham is a wealthy, peculiar lady, who has never seen the sun, had all the clocks stopped and has worn her wedding dress ever since her fiancée had schemed to steal money from her whilst engaged and then brake off the wedding.
Upon arriving at Satis House (Miss Havisham’s house), Pip is greeted by the proud, but beautiful, daughter of Miss Havisham. Pip immediately falls in love with her and dreams of being of her social class. After a few weeks, Miss Havisham sees that there begins to be an attraction towards Pip from Estella and so she dismisses him. Pip begins to study how to read and write, in the hopes of one day being of enough social value to cross paths with her again.
The book continues, as Pip grows into teenager, training to become his brother-in-law’s apprentice at the blacksmith. He is one day greeted by a lawyer, Mr Jaggers, who informs Pip that a mysterious benefactor had given him some property and has wished that he come to London to learn how to become a gentleman. Pip sets off for London and meets his first friend, Herbert Pockey, whom he lives with. He also joins a Gentlemen’s Club, run by Bentley Drummle, who is extremely wealthy, but very rude.
Over time, Pip becomes accustomed to his new life and once again his paths cross with Estella. He receives a letter requesting if he can accompany her around London. Pip accepts, and begins to think the Miss Havisham is the benefactor, whose intention is for him to become proper enough to marry Estella. Estella, though, plays the hearts of other men, leaving Pip distraught and confused. He confronts her and she assures him it is all just a game for her, since she has no heart.
Pip and Herbert live extremely carefree lives, and Pip has no care for the responsibility he is given with his money once he turned twenty one and he soon falls into debt. He receives news from home that his sister has died due to a beating she’d received from Orlick; her husband’s helper once Pip had left. The beating had turned her in a semi-vegetative state for a while. Pip returns home for the funeral, feeling guilty and upset that he had not kept up their relationship.
Several years pass, and Pip comes home one day to the convict in the beginning of the book in his house. The man introduces himself as Abel Magwitch and tells him he is Pip’s benefactor. Pip is distraught by this news, since he realises he was being used as amusement for Miss Havisham as she watched him for more and more in love with Estella. Pip decides to get Magwitch out of London, especially after finding out that a criminal that Magwitch was in fight with was pursuing him. The criminal’s name is Compeyson and Pip realises that Compeyson and Magwitch were the ones the cheated Miss Havisham, and Compeyson was the fiancée.
Whilst Pip is preparing to get Compeyson out of London, he hears that Estella has gotten engaged to Mr Drummle. Enraged, Pip sets out for Satis House and confronts Miss Havisham. She begs for…