A Child’s Perspective

Pip is raised by his sister, who seems to be the dominant force in the household. This is humorously mentioned, whom Pip says that his sister perhaps married Joe “by hand”. I find it interesting that in the early chapters, Mrs. Joe Gargery seems to be the strongest character in Pips domestic life, rather than Joe. This contrasts greatly with Wuthering Heights, where the gender roles of the characters often times put the father figure as the stronger power. Pip seems to fear his sister, and even believes that Joe fears her too.

I wonder whether this is a quirk of Pip’s perceptions of his surrounding world, or a general result of having a narrative delivered from the first person of a younger character. Similar things can be seen with his interactions with the “young man”, who in the first two chapters Pip believes is a genuine force that could harm him if he does not follow the orders to retrieve the file. Even the early parts of Wuthering Heights where the characters are much younger are filtered to us from a separate adults perspective, where Great Expectations seems to be a more candid view of the character’s perspective.

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