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Personal Experience in London

Joe is a gentleman. He is never rude to anyone and never got angry in the novel even once. The way he behaves which is quiet, polite, kind, sharing and caring is the ways you can tell he is a gentleman. Sometimes, I felt sorry for him that he didn’t get more because he deserves a lot more. Joe views Pip as a hardworking and caring person. I say this because Joe knows it will take a long time and hard work for him to become a gentleman and he is caring because from time to time, he is concerned for everyone especially when he leaves.

Dickens shows us Joe’s feelings by his movement.

When Joe went to visit Pip in London, he was so nervous that when his hat kept falling off, he immediately got up putting it back and then scuffled a bit and fell into his tea making Pip fairly angry. He also shows us by his face expressions.

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“His good honest face all glowing and shining”. This tells me that it is quite easy to tell how Joe is feeling and the word “honest” definitely tells me that even Pip knows that Joe is the true gentleman out of them two which is maybe why Pip sometimes thought he was jealous of him but it may have been the other way round.

I think that Joe is a wonderful character to have in the novel because he really sets an example how we people in most novels should me but more importantly in life.

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Dickens has included Magwitch in this character to be a unique person in the novel and also one of the surprised events which he did. At the beginning, we see Magwitch as an escaped convict trying to get back to his life needing the help of young Pip. He gets caught and we don’t see him again. But he shows his true self being unselfish and kind by not mentioning that Pip helped him but him admitting that he broke in and stole some items from Joe.

We all then thought we wouldn’t see Magwitch again and that was the last time we saw him but we were wrong. Years after, Pip found out that he had a benefactor which he assumes straight away to be Ms. Havisham but he was mistaken. One day in London, he gets a visit from a stranger knowing all about him. He then reveals himself to be Magwitch the convict and he was the person who was his benefactor and Magwitch laughs about it and hugs him, but Pip was more shocked than happy; he almost seemed upset about it.

He relates to being a gentleman because from time to time he is one. After reading the whole novel, I thought Magwitch’s ambitions were for his daughter Estella because that is her only daughter and since he is far away from her, he would want to help her in every way possible. But because of meeting Pip in such a situation and Pip helping him despite not knowing who he was and what he was must have gone into Magwitch’s heart so he decided to pick Pip instead knowing he is a simple poor lad. Magwitch behaves like a gentleman twice in the novel to me.

The first one is when he is caught by the police and lies to them that he stole the items to help him escape, so that Pip would not get into trouble by his sister, Joe and the Police. He did this because I think that he felt sorry for a young boy like him to get involved in this matter and that the fact that he helped him made him feel even sorrier for him. The second time was when he visited and called Pip “Master” as if he was his servant for what he did for him and the way he talked to him was very polite aswell

I think Dickens thinks of Magwitch as a reformed character who knows what he did before was wrong and has put the past behind him. He is a decent, caring and unselfish person deep down but may look like a rock on the outside. I think that he is part of a message to the readers telling us that class system has nothing to do with how people behave because has you can see, Magwitch, a convict helped out a person with his dreams by being unselfish. Pip becomes more humble, repentant and realises what has happened was wrong and I think he gets a little more emotional aswell.

I say this because he has learnt many things while in London. I think he mainly changed because of Ms Havisham, Magwitch and Joe. Before Ms Havisham died, she revealed the truth about everything and at last showed us and Pip that she does have a heart. When Magwitch got injured while trying to escape, Pip must of felt guilty about it and so then he tried to spend as much as time with him as possible. “”he was ready to listen to me, and it became the first duty of my life to say to him, and read to him, what I knew he ought to hear”.

You can see now how more kinder Pip has gotten with his mind now. The main change came because of Joe. When he learnt that Pip was ill, he came to look after him which was noble of him and you wouldn’t expect less from him. He also paid for the fees when Pip was arrested which again was generous from Joe. Pip began to see what he did and said to Joe was wrong and that after all this happened, Joe still thought Pip as his best friend. I do think this was Pip’s journey into manhood because he realised these mistakes and quickly changed everything and he learnt a lot. Dickens put him through a lot.

Maybe this was because he was to show how life was like in the Victorian Times and how hard life is if you’re poor. I think it was a test for Pip to see how the real life is and to show us; the reader what can happen in life and maybe it’s a lesson for us to know what to do. But maybe he put Pip so much because Victorians were fascinated with orphanhood so he did a detailed novel of Pip’s life. I think Dickens is suggesting that to be a gentleman does not require you to learn it but you must behave like it like Joe as example, but if you want to force to be it, then its hard.

In Victorian Times, social class was everything and this was how people were grouped and separated from each other; the rich away from the poor. Changing social class would be very difficult and especially for a young mind like Pip. You would have to understand that Pip was given money; a lot of money which he did not expect, so he wasn’t really sure how to deal with it and maybe that’s why him moving up social class was more harder for him than anyone else. Of course, women were also grouped a bit differently than men.

When a woman married a man, she would have to take her husbands name which you can tell that back in those days it was sexism as men were thought to be more superior and women were just expected to stay home and look after the house and the kids. Women only had a few rights aswell in that time. Dickens published this book and basically told a novel of what happened in those days. This was when the economy gave rise to a wealthy middle class which again may have been a reason why class systems occurred. Crimes and disease also occurred.

Only men with power and property could vote excluding out poor men, poor women and even powerful women. I think that Dickens’s view and the rest of society’s view were not the same. I think that Dickens’s view was to show that what social class systems can affect society but I reckon for the rest of society, it didn’t make a difference I think that Great Expectations was a novel of a kind which I have never read before. It has everything a novel should need and I do think at the end, Dickens still is not sure by what a gentleman is as he does not really give us what it means but maybe it was a question for us.

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Personal Experience in London. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from

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