The Development of Pip in Great Expectations

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The Development of Pip in Great Expectations

 

As Pip grows throughout the novel, he develops and matures from a naive, young boy to a moral gentleman by the three main stages that take place throughout his life.

 

In the first stage of Pip's life he is young and does not understand what it means to be a gentleman and how it can affect his life.  Pip basically asks for three wishes in the first stage.  He wants education, wealth, and social advancement.  These three wishes are mostly so he can impress Estella, who is the symbol of this first stage.  Pip does not want to be a lowly blacksmith like Joe.  He wants to be intelligent.  He wants to be considered a person of high importance.  At the end of this stage he moves to London and begins to see the problems in the fog ahead.

 

In the second stage Pip is able to live his dreams of being educated and wealthy.  As the second stage progresses he has less and less time for other people outside of his little circle.  He mistreats Joe and Biddy.  He finds he is embarrassed to be around them.  His relationship with Estella also worsens.  They had not seen each other in years and the small bond that they had broke in time.  Estella then marries Drummle instead of Pip and all his hopes for her are lost as well.  Pip also begins to spend too much money and goes into debt even with his secret benefactor giving him money.  Once Pip discovers who his benefactor truly is all his dreams are shattered.  He cannot believe a criminal had been supplying him with money all this time.  Stage two ends with Pip being broken and destroyed with all the problems he faces.

 

In the third stage Pip tries to repair all his relationships with people he mistreated and loved.  Pip finds Herbert a good job even if it means Pip using some of his own money.  Pip also tries to help Magwitch escape.  Although Magwitch does not escape, Pip makes Magwitch happy before he dies telling him that he has a daughter and that he is in love with her.

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  Pip also helps Miss Havisham discover the error of her ways.  She is happy Pip has shown her this and would like to give Pip some money to help him with his debts.  Pip does not take the offer and knows that he himself must work hard to pay off his debts.  Pip then goes to his home in the marshes.  Joe pays off all his debts and their relationship is now repaired.  Pip also meets Little Pip, the symbol of rebirth.  Pip fixed all his problems and was never again faced with them because he decided to live with the people he loved, Joe and Biddy, his family.

 

At the end Pip matured from a boy who did not truly understand the burdens of being wealthy to a young gentleman who was deeply in debt and only had his one friend Herbert by his side, to a young man living in the marshes with his family with no problems whatsoever.

 


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