13 de noviembre de 2009

"GREAT EXPECTATIONS", Charles Dickens

Critics say that Dickens is possibly the best narrator in English. He certainly is a master at getting deep inside, and potraying human nature. We hope that the FIFTHS enjoy this new novel.

492 comentarios:

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Manolo dijo...

Hello guys,
Last friday Carmen asked me to look for a 'Great Expections' audiobook in the Internet. Unfortunatelly the only one which is under 'Public domain' license, is a computer-generated audiobook available here.
Anyway, there are many books which you can download using a 'per-to-per' software (if you have installed a torrent client and know how to use it, you have some download links here).

I have got two, one unanbridged and other accelerated, and the movie shot in 1998 with subtitles. I will give a copy to Carmen which you could borrow. I hope it's useful for you.

Manolo (AV1-B)

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Greatest expectations do I have about this novel! I feel like reading it a lot, so that I feel temptations to have a look at it, but I prefer not to start until "the painted veil" should be finished.

Carmen dijo...

Manolo, Thank you so much for this. It´s fantastic that you have found this and have shared it with!!! We should all be a team!!! Thanks again, I´ll be waiting for you in the Fifth Form. Good luck this year, and my love to Emma, Mr. Woodhouse, Harriet, Mr. Knightely, of course, and...your wife!

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Hello Manolo, thank you very much for your help. It will be very useful.

We will borrow the copy from Carmen.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Thank you Manolo, I have just got the audiobook and I am sure it will be a good help!

I have only read a couple of pages, but I have noticed that the language is less "corny" (maybe "affected" is the word) than in Auste´s novels (at least P&P and Persuasion) so I have the impression that it will be easier to follow. Is not the style of writing a a bit more modern?

I have also cought a glipmse of the author sense of humor of which Marta told us in the classroom (I found it funny and sad when the boy answers about who his mother is pointing at the tombstone an saying "also Georgiana!").

Javier Martinez Corpa dijo...

Hello! I have read the first chapter, and although it´s more difficult to read than "The painted Veil" in my oppinion will be interesting too. The beginning is full of intrigue because of the misterious crippled man. And it´s impossible to overlook the figure of Mrs. Joe Gargery, Pip´s sister. I think she´s a very strict person. All this promises good time for the readers. Do you agree?

María dijo...

Hi! It is María, an ex student. Last year I loved A tale of two cities, so I would like to join you reading this book of Dickens´. I have read two chapters and I agree with Javier that it has awaken "great expectations". I will wait for your comments to know which way you are following and not to spoil the plot. Enjoy the reading!

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

I wish to enjoy this book!.
And I wish to learn the subjunctive properly as Carmen said that this book contains many examples.

Did you notice that the convict doesn´t pronounce the words starting with "w" correctly?. He says "wittles" instaid of victuals. He says "wain" instaid of vain.

Chapter II introduces us Pip´s sister. I agree with Javier that she looks a very strict person. I also think that Mrs Joe Gargery has a permanet sense of grievance (because it is hard to be a blackmith´s wife, because she is not Pip´s mother, because she wears the apron during the whole life ...). She also persuades Pip that he must be guilty of "something".

By the way Maria, thank you for enjoying the blog with us. You will help us. (we are reading chapters I and II).

AGABRIELA AVANZ2 dijo...

Thanks Manolo, it´ll be very useful. I´ll borrow it from Carmen.

Hi, María, Great you´ve joined us!!

Anónimo dijo...

Who knows where to download XRumer 5.0 Palladium?
Help, please. All recommend this program to effectively advertise on the Internet, this is the best program!

Carmen dijo...

María, you are very welcome..I wonder if you´ll have time to be with us all the time here....as you have so many things to do...where you are...not only work but also thinking...well i hope you understand me. You can ocasionally contribute to the blog some experience you have had...or information about London...so that we can see how interesting you can make it.
Dickens is funny. Yes, the description of Pip´s mother "also Georgiana" is very funny because the author is pointing out that for Pip his mother was only that, thus he ahd received no affection, no warmth from her, and with only that sentence he captures the little boy´s tragedy, but at the same time the readeer cannot help smiling to himself. This is Dickens style, tragic though what he describes may be, we still smile, he weaves himself into our hearts....gently...quietly...softly.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Yesterday I listened to the audiobook and I found it very useful and interesting as well. Some more virtues of the text are appreciated with ease, for instance the rythm especially when "he tilted me again" is repeated several times in between the menaces of the fearful man.

I wonder how long did it take to write it, because every single expression seems to be thoughtfully wrote with a propose. There are thousands of ways to say "he ran home" but it was Dickens that wrote "I set my face towards home, and I made the best use of my legs".
The style is great notwithstanding the focus seems to be a little bit childish: descriptions are writen with the glance of a young boy.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

ups! Indirect style: I wonder how long it took to write it.

Javier MArtinez Corpa dijo...

Jesus, do you know where I can find the audiobook? Is in the Internet or a copy that you got in the class?

Carmen dijo...

A good criticism, Jesús, vut "written" not wrote!!! I think that first chapter captures the interest of the reader, consider how much information we have gained in two pages: Pip is an orphan, who has lost of his family, he lives with a married sister, and we also meet a prisioner, who has just escaped prision with some feeling for the little fellow. How happy is Pip? As you read on you have to try and understand the characters feelings and actions. Why doesn´t Pip fight it out with the thief? Do you think it is because he is subdued by his family at home??

Carmen dijo...

Javier, ask Mar, it is something Manolo, a 4th year has given me for you. Haven´t you read his post?

Susana dijo...

It's a great opportunity to read this novel in group. I highly appreciate all your comments which will let me learn more about Dicken's writting.
In this chapter it has caught my attention how Dickens uses some words or structures repetition to emphasize. For example, in the man description every feature is preceded by "and" (and with broken shoes..., and with and old rag...). In the young man description Dickens uses "young man" eight times, ande "may" four. I think this structure is masterly used to create a threating atmosphere.
The most surprising is that these structures are not preceived are repetitive or redundant, but they highly enrich the text.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Answering Carmen´s question about Pip and why doesn´t he fihgt it out with the thief, I think that not only does he bear the situation with a certain degree of self-confidence but he also answers the questions in a very correct way, using words such us (yes sir, if you would kindly please ...). I don´t contradict myself if I say that in spite of him being afraid of the situation it looks like there is an understanding between Pip and the convict.

Yes indeed, I think that Pip is subdued by his sister. However, how different the relation is with Mr Joe, Pip and Mr Joe are fond of each other. We will speak about them tomorrow, in chapter two, but I only want to comment on that I like the friendship between Pip and Mr Joe, it is very special, isn´t it?.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Carmen suggested that we comment on the sentences: “Conscience is a dreadful thing when it accuses man or boy; but when in the case of a boy ...”
There is a big meaning in these words. It makes me think about Pip´s struggles. Hi has a conflict with his attitude and his emotions. It also makes me think about Pip´s maturity.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Hello Carmen, Yes now I´ve read the comment from Manolo. I couldn´t see it when I wrote the message, Thanks!

cris Avd2A dijo...

READ IT, PLEASE;
Hello mates!! I'm still suffering "vertigo" so I won't be able go tomorrow to our English lesson. This thursday (3rd december) I have to do chapter 4 but I'm not sure that I can go because of my illness. I'd be terribly greatfull if someone could change me my chapter for another later.
Please tell me an answer here in the blog.
Thank you very much in advanced
Cristina Garrido

carmen dijo...

Susana, a very accurate post..you are noticing Dickens´style and you are absolutely right he uses repetition in a masterly way.
Mar, I think that as it is written in the first person, Pip, as adult comments things that a child could not put in black and white though he could probably, undoubtedly feel, but not explain, however the adult, which is relating the story can of course.
Nobody has discussed this question. Is conscience something that we can forget? have you seen in films, how terrorists complain that their crimes revisit htem at night??? Is it easy to sleep tight when we have our coscience pricking us?? Do you think that conscience is something we learn or something that just comes with us into this world? is Religion responsible for it? You have the floor now...

Carmen dijo...

Cristina, don´t worry I´ll change the chapter for you with someone.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

In my opinion conscience is our worst judge. At least for me.

Our socienty tends to be more and more conciousless, maybe becouse old values have been devalued, or maybe because we all have become more individualist. The thing is that due to that lack of conscience it is each time more and more difficult to find someone who asumes responsibilities. Think about our political class: Do you really think that they sleep as bad as Pip did when they do things wrong?
I dare say they do not.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

In my opinion, our conscience (self-knowledge) is always accompanied with sentiments of approbation and condemnation. I was thinking about the question: do you think that conscience is something we learn or something that just comes with us into this world? I think that “evolution” could be the answer.

Jesus, I agree with you, but thinking about politicians, in general, do you think that someone else can be the conscience of our conscience?. I think that it is also possible.

Anónimo dijo...

I am so sorry for Pip, he was spending so bad that one would like to help him. I don’t think religion be responsible for our conscience. Pip doesn’t practice any sort of religion and he feels his conscience. May be it comes with us into this world and everyone manages according to each situation. We must not judge anybody why they do sometimes, and thinking that they have not conscience if we don’t know what is in their minds, their fears, their ambitions etc… like it happens to Pip and some potlicians.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Hello Cristina,

First of all I hope you feel better today, don´t worry about chapter nº 4, I´ll do it for you. And you have enough time to choose another one because I didn´t have any chapter assigned yet.

So, Try to recover of your illness as soon as possible and I hope to see you soon in the classes.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Hello again, I want to talk only about two things.

First, about chapter nº3,we overlooked the last part when Pip leaves the meeting point, while the thief is using the file for breaking his shackles.

Second thing, In my opinion the blog is a good thing for us to improve our writing, and keep the contact between us outdoors the school, then let´s try to make an effort all of us to support the blog and work as a team. Thank you for your attention.

Carmen dijo...

Jesús, I daresay some of them are unawares that they are doing something wrong, on the contrary they think they are a kind of god whitout whom the country would not survive. What they suffer from is pride. Pip, being a child is yet to acquaire the vices and sins our politicians suffer form. however the horse starts running and it always gets you, they will suffer.
To our unknown poster, Pip practises Religion, they speak of their Sunday clothes, and he goes to church, that would be the Church of England, of course, but he is a church goer.
Javier, I think you are one of the few who has the correct attitude towards learning this year. You are clever to see that is an incredible learning tool that very few schools have. I agree with you that the last, quoting Dickens, we read of the paragraph is really good. I hope all of you are starting to perceive that Dickens is a master when describing anything. I would like to point out the "royal we" the thief uses when he says towards the end"give us hold of the file,boy" now this 2nd person pl. is normally used by monarchs, he uses it because he has probably heard it used but is not conscious that he is making a mistake

Susana dijo...

I have read again the paragraph about how the thief feels, in the marshes, because I found it difficult the first time. The thief is scared, but I think Dickens wants to show us how his feeling is at just that moment, when he is alone, at night, in the marshes. The fear he feels is physical, so Dickens uses verbs of perception for the description (see, hear) and some expressions concerning sounds, like “the rattle of the muskets”, “he tramp, tramp of the pursuing party”, “the guns firing”, “the voices calling”, or images, like the “read coats lighted up by the torches”. I think also that the description turns into a more distant reflection when Dickens uses the third person (when a man’s alone…).

I think he uses a subjunctive equivalent when Pip says to the thief “I wonder you shouldn’t have been sure of that”, ¿do you agree?

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

I think that the story is writen to make the reader feel empathy for the man. The contrast between the amiable, gathering, friendly and timorous boy and the rude, crude and primitive man turns out to be funny. For instance:

"-Did you speak?
-I said I was glad you enjoy it.
-Thank you my boy, I do."

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

It´s clear that from the beginning we have found deep descriptions about the characters that we´ve seen throughout this three chapters, and other thing that calls my attention is the big amount of abbreviations, sometimes difficult to understand.

About the subjunctive, I agree with Susana.

carmen dijo...

Susan, a very good observation and post. Because it is physical fear of being caught, pursued then the verbs are physical.
Good with the subjuntive, too. you are going to become experts!!
Jesús Dickens always makes readers aware of what he wishes to point out through humour, that´s the way he gets to people. He was a real "best seller" at a time when few people read!!!!
Javier, these

Estela AV-2 dijo...

I think Dickens has a good sense of humour(though sometimes i don´t get it since i found it a little bit difficult).I want to make a point in a sentence i have found funny"I was always treated as if i had insisted on being born in opposition to the dictates of reason, seligion, and morality , and against the dissuading arguments of my best friends"It´s amazing how meticulous can Dickens describe what Pip thinks.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

As we are still commenting on chapter three, I like the paragraph wich appears just before the dialogue mentioned by Jesus: “Something clicked in his throat, as if he had works in him like a clock, and was goind to strike. And he smeared his ragged rough sleeve over his eyes”. I think that Dickens describes it in a masterly way and I was thinking about this when I read the next sentence: “ Pitying his desolation, and watching him as he gradually settled down upon the pie ... “ and it made me think about the emphasis the author gives those last words before the nice short conversation between Pip and the convict.

Chapter four introduces new characters. We will speak about this chapter tomorrow. I´m very much looking forward to knowing about new characters.

Re the blog, as Carmen is forever telling us that we must go into the blog, I bet that my fellow students and I (I mean, all of us) will do our best. (It is time for New Year resolutions). I really believe that we will not only improve our writing but also be able to analyse the book in a very different way.

Manolo AV2A dijo...

Hello, I have to recognise when in the presentation lesson Carmen told us about a the blog task we should do everyday I found myself very surprised. It was the first time I heard about this sort of thing to learn a language.

After this time, it can be told this internet item is a very important and skilled tool to get your writing improved, but I would add and your reading too.

Manolo AV2A dijo...

I think conscience is a regretful feeling we can mostly experiment related to previous affairs. However,in this case Dickens cleverly shows us conscience would be possible even speaking about future situations.

For that reason as he is refering about boy or man conscience he willy changes the style from a third person narration to first person one.

In this way, he is brightly emphasizing that future conscience would be possible indeed.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

I have just had a look to the chapter 4th, and it is surprising how much he uses the present participle in absolute construction. The first line of the novel was an announcement: My father's family name being Pirrip

I liked a lot the guest's descriptions with the Roman nose, and the legs wide apart leting Pip see some miles of open country in between.
It is also funny how after a while he takes up again the roman nose to express the aggravation he felt "Romans must hava aggravated one another very much"

In truth, the focus based on a child mind is brilliant. An adult wold center his attention on the content of the speech, but not on the aggravating nose. Children are set as an example of creativity, and it is usually the logical and rational education that make them think as dull people. In this case Dickens is able to write with an grown hand and mature mind, but conserving the imaginativeness and the ingeniousness of a child.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

I agree with you Jesus, Dickens says things throughout Pip as the children do: Always innocent but sometimes straight to the point. Children are always unpredictable.

Carmen dijo...

I´ll answer tonight, I´m currenty setting off for the country but mean to take the computer with me so that we can be connected. Some interesting commets on style, Jesús and on children, Javier, and on conscience, manolo. i´ll get back to you!!

Anónimo dijo...

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carmen dijo...

Mar,I am very pleased about your so called "New Year´s resolutions", but unfortunately your mates are not of your mind. When you are learning the first thing you have to consider is whetether you really want to do so or whether you are coming to lessons in the hope that you will learn, through "hearing". Most of your class is under the second group. It is indeed a pity that you don´t take advantage of this tool. There are some of you who know this and some who feel this, but the thickest of the group, see the blog as something worthless and a waste of time.
However I´ve thinking about what I said the other day and it seems a pity that there are some people who want to post and practice, so I´ve decided to contnue with the "chosen few".

Carmen dijo...

Have you seen our anonymous friend? Now You understand why I don´t wnat anyone without a name on OUR blog.
Jesúsyou are absolutely right in your post about children. Dickens uses them to describe things from another perspective, describe or show, I mean through them we see other things, those that would escape adults.
chapter 4 shows some very good descriptions of the typical second characters Dickens is so good at describing. His main characterss are never the best. For example Uncle Pumblechook, Joe, Mrs. Gargery.

Teresa dijo...

Hi mates,
First of all, I'd like to beg your pardon because since I was a fourth in this school last year, I am not unaware of my misusing of this blog all along this time. So let's see how the New Year's resolutions work out.
For I can get into the story as good as you have already done, I'm still re-reading all these four chapters. And I dare say I like the way Dickens uses humour nearly on every scene and I think Pip helps him a lot with this challenge by now. We (adults) usually think that telling a white lie occasionally is better than upset someone. But a child always tells this truth adults are not capable of. and that lack of malice you can find in children tends to put a smile on my face.

Teresa dijo...

sorry, upsetting... I think

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

I appreciate very much indeed Carmen´s decision.

It is in chapter four that we know about new characters. During the dinner Pip is beaten by all of them, besides Mrs Joe. But nevertheless, Joe shows him compassion, and friendship. In spite of him being a good help for Pip, he is not able to help him with words. We will probably know Joe´s personality through his noble acts during the whole novel.
I love Pip´s acttitude during the dinner because hi is not persuaded by words.

Cris AV-2A dijo...

Thank you Javier for doing my chapter, I hope to be completely recover for this thursday but I still have some difficulties to read without feeling a little dizzy. I've seen your are posting a lot of great comment and it is going to be hard catch you up, hopefully Christmas is coming and I'll have enough time then.

Carmen, thank you very much for your help. See you next day.

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

I am truly disconcerted with Mrs Joe personality. Mrs. Joe, whose name the author does not tell us, at least until this moment, appears as a tyrant, who oppresses her husband and her little brother Pip. Maybe it is ironic that she be called “Mrs Joe”, because it doesn´t seem at all that she is a “traditional” wife: feminine, quiet. On the contrary, she appears masculine and commendatory. Joe is clearly the one being abused in this story. This can be seen in the numerous references of her wife: “being married to a lowly blacksmith..”
Although Pips sister is not wealthy, she has got the “aristocratic” connections to define her as part of the elite class. She continually oppresses and threatens Mr. Joe and Pip with bodily harm. Joe, uneducated, but very honourable and sensitive man, gets closer to Pip, being good help for him.

Roberto dijo...

Hello everyone!

Some of you might remember me some might not. Well, it does not matter. I left the school last year after two unforgettable terms. I have tried hard to move on, to keep going, to start a new life without this Blog (and obviously Carmen and Marta), but I cannot. There is no forgetting this marvellous way of LEARNING. Yes, I am using capital letters on purpose because that is the plain truth, real learning, in every way. That is the reason why you all should follow my advice and make good use of this last chance you have to do so. More even when it is a novel of Dickens’ that will serve you as the means to achieve it.

By the way, personal circumstances have made me realize that those who do not belong to the club normally are afraid of becoming part it because the ones who are already in the team seem to know each other and have fun, with no need of anyone new trying to join them. Remember that you are always welcome even if you can only write from time to time or think your comments to be nonsense. It does not matter, do it, persevere and you will eventually become one of us.

Anyway, this post was supposed not to be a very long one, so let us focus on the novel. After reading your comments all (up to chapter 4), I see that there are many interesting topics to discuss and must say that some of your posts are good indeed. Besides, you have quoted skilfully too. Well done!

My personal perception is that, as Carmen has already pointed, in just few pages, you have such an amount of information about both characters and situations, that you become part of the story, feeling and suffering as the characters do. Sometimes, you even need to reread some paragraphs to acquire proper understanding of what Dickens is showing us. For instance, “a fearful man, all in coarse gray....and growled”.

Indeed, Dickens is the master when mixing up tragedy and humour is concerned, like in “A tale of two cities”. I am all astonishment!

Conscience: I believe that we are highly influenced both by religion and social constraints. Otherwise, I guess we would behave only according to what we need, never worrying about consequences (unless they may hurt us), like animals do.

Have you noticed how perfectly well described the mind of a child is? The way we see things at that age: our fears, our sentiments, our perspective of things? I do sympathy with Pit because we all were like that, trying to understand the world around us, always with perplexity and innocence. We are innocent but mainly ignorant. Don't you think that ignorance should be considered as a value instead of as a weakness?

:-)

Manolo AV2A dijo...

In chapter 4 we can see how more a more characters are greatfully appearing. These new poeple in the novel make patent the tremendous differences between Mrs Joe and, Joe and Pip.
So,to show that Dickens uses the scene of the dinner, which is symbolized as a perfect and significant performance of two very distant worlds. The way Dicken focuses it is using a continuing and offensive campaign aimed at Pip.
Through the chapter it is also clear that Pip and Joe know they both are an unique team with only two players. By then, Joe is constantly helping Pip in each harmful comment coming from other one.
Indeed, Pip and Joe are aware they are having a dinner in the same table that "another" is taking place at the same time.

Anónimo dijo...

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Alicia dijo...

hello everyone!
I don´t usually post here because I don´t have Internet in Madrid, but today I am in my town. I don´t pick up as much as I would like about the book, I hope understanding everything with the time.
I think that the poor Pip isn´t treated very well. His sister is very cold and distant with him and she doesn´t look after him as a child. Dickens doesn´t say us her name and it seems as if he wants us to thimk that Pip prefer the thief instead of his sister.

Georgina dijo...

Hello everyone!

First of all, Cristina, I hope you feel better and see you on Thursday.

About the book, I agree with most of you about Mrs. Joe character. Hiding her name, Dickens probably wants to show us, as well as being a distant person, Mrs. Joe doesn’t seem to be very happy. It is really strange that her younger brother speaks to her like that, especially if we realize he is only a child.
Why is Mrs. Joe so cold? What has happened to her to have this behavior to her husband and to her brother?

María dijo...

Hi there! Very pleased to see you here Roberto! It is always high time we comment and discuss (and argue) such a novel like this one, no matter if we are not students anymore.

Roberto, sorry, but I don´t think ignorance be a value but a handicap, which doesn´t allow us to be happy, just contented. Don´t you agree?

As for conscience, I think it is something which is in all of us, assuming the premise that every human being is good by nature as true. Conscience is something inherent to human beings, and also a "pressure" which comes from outside, for believing in someone superior, like a god. Two types of conscience exist: the one which chases us each night in our beds (which chases the dead in their graves), and the one imposed from outside, which scares us more, perhaps, than the former, because it involves punishment: we, frightened at Heaven´s door by God´s question "How could you?". After a bad deed, how can the forgiveness be got, for it being the best of consolations, the best conscience´s relief? The answer could be: recognize the sin, first, and confess it after, not only to the priest.
Today I´ve been told that a girl, aged 13, who is getting ready for the First Communion, started to cry at confession because she was being not very nice with another girl, a school mate of hers, and said: "He would not be proud of my behaviour". What do you think? However, I think that the "He" was not referring to God himself but to her father, who died. Anyway, it is a good example to illustrate our "conscience", isn´t it?

Manolo AV2A dijo...

Hello mates!

I obviously agree with the former comments about Mrs. Joe´s behaviour, as a cruel and unfair women. It is evident through the novel Mrs. Joe´s role is completing the vacancy of Mrs. Joe´s and Pip´s mother.

But would Mrs. Joe act in different way with her mother running Pip´s growing ?

I don´t think so, because her mannners would be the same with reference to her husband, Mr Joe.

By then, Dickens show us Mrs. Joe in that whole negative aspect, being it very illustrative the efficient and well-built relationship between Mr Joe and Pip. The author is always working with the reader´s mind, as if he wanted all of them to think softly about Pip and to hate Mrs. Joe.

In this case Dickens uses these technics not only to reflect the main character, Pip, but to do more brilliant other ones, such as Mrs. Joe. So, from my point of view, if it were not important Dickens would have already uncovered the Mrs. Joe´s name.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Hello friends,

Excuse me for being lost during last days. I went to a little village in Cuenca and I didn´t have internet there.

First of all, You´re welcome Cristina. I hope to see you in class tomorrow. And thank you Carmen for your decision about going on with the blog.

My oppinion abut Roberto´s question, Ignorance sometimes is a good thing. Depending on the subject and the situation is better be ignorant.

Roberto dijo...

You are completely right, it amazing to see the perfect way in which the story is being told throughout a child’s eye and Carmen has certainly a point when saying that it is alos a means to give us another perspective of the world as we, adults, see it. That is the reason why I have doubts regarding Mr and Mrs Gargery’s character. Is the latter so insensitive, so authoritarian and so unkind or just a woman who has had to struggle to keep going with no parents, a brother to look after and a weak husband? As for Joe, he may sympathy with such pitiable condition as Pip is passing through, however, he behaves very passively and that is not solace at all, still less if you are just a child.

Maria, I think you are agreeing with me. We have conscience because we believe in God and also due to social constraints, which means we have been told what it is supposed to be right and wrong. But if you, for instance, had been born in a remote island among animals, you would not probably discern between them.

I could really feel Pip’s terror when he was going to be told off about the pie and also identified myself with those moments of one’s childhood when you thought that the world was going to end because of a trivial mischief of yours.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Roberto and Maria, you are very welcome to the blog. You will help us!. (Carmen missed you very much).

As you can see, our participation is getting better all the time and we will continue in that way!!!

Roberto dijo...

Thank you Mar, your comments are good indeed. You will improve a lot this year, so keep going.

Let me tell you something as evidence that both Carmen and Marta’s teaching are really top level. I have met an English man, nice and intelligent, studying English Literature here, in Swansea University (he is doing the last year). Well, I am able to speak with him about Shakespeare, Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, Keats, Wordsworth... I even dare to quote and mention extracts of their masterpieces (he even does not have much idea about Alfred Prufrock for instance, only that he was a contemporary poet). Yesterday, I tried to tell him about Wordsworth but I did not remember how to pronounce his name properly, so I mentioned “the daffodils” appearing in a poem of his and this English man understood and even quoted the first verses.

Can you believe it? A Spanish person who did not know anything about English 2 years ago and now is "nearly" at the same level as an English person studying English authors. That is the reason why you all must keep working hard, because you have the chance of achieve excellence which is something few times in life is given so easily!!

Roberto dijo...

of achieving!!!

Sorry

Susana dijo...

Hi! Roberto and Maria. We know about you through Carmen, an we are really happy about your joining to this year community.

About conscience, I presume all us are born with a slight capacity to distinguish good and evil, even though for kids, good is their good and evil is their evil.
Being educated, children become aware about what is allowed or not. Education comes not only from parents or teachers, but also from society (religion also) which surrounds them and offers patterns of behaviour. I think children, as Pip, who are still naïf, accept these rules without questioning, and turn filled of remorse if they fail.
When we become adults, generally, we, consciously or unconsciously, find justification to avoid some moral rules that don’t fit in our life. I don’t think Mrs Joe is showing any remorse for how she treats Pip and Joe.

About chapter five, I’ve found really funny the first part when soldiers come into the house. As it was said during last class the description of the group of soldiers standing about in the kitchen is theatrical, we perfectly can imagine the scene with the characters in different positions. Moreover, the sergeant talking looks comic and a bit affected, like in the answer to Mrs Joe (“I should reply, the honour and pleasure of his fine wife’s acquaintance”) or when he accepts the wine (“said that, as he preferred his drink without tar, he would take wine, if it was equally convenient”). Probably a sergeant is a powerful and influential person in a small town and he behaves nicely but in authority. He knows he is the centre attention.

carmen dijo...

Hello, Roberto!!!! WAOW, that first post is really good!!! So well-written and so concise because long though it is short when you read it, everything you say is interesting and you deal with many things, so not long at all. I think that now the blog, which was passing away slowly will be brought to life again!!!
I´ve had some two full-of-plans-weeks and have been unable to post much, but tomorrow I´m going home at 7 am and will be on line in the afternoon evening, reading all teh rest of the posts and writing myself.
Roberto your writing....well, you will become a native yet!

carmen dijo...

Hello, Roberto!!!! WAOW, that first post is really good!!! So well-written and so concise because long though it is short when you read it, everything you say is interesting and you deal with many things, so not long at all. I think that now the blog, which was passing away slowly will be brought to life again!!!
I´ve had some two full-of-plans-weeks and have been unable to post much, but tomorrow I´m going home at 7 am and will be on line in the afternoon evening, reading all teh rest of the posts and writing myself.
Roberto your writing....well, you will become a native yet!

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MAR (5 A) dijo...

Pip asked himself if “his convict” would think that he was the person who had brought the soldiers there. But Pip is not a “deceiving imp” and the convict knows it. It is in chapter five that we see a loyal attitude from the convict towards Pip.
Pip’s innocence was understood by “his convict” not because of Pip’s signals through his hands and his head. In my opinion, it was understood because the convict made the right interpretation of the situation. Look at the words he said: “I wish to say something respecting this scape. It may prevent some persons laying under suspicion alonger me”. Anyway,

I want to share my feelings with you as I’m in England for five days and I will go to Eton this evening. Carmen is forever teaching us the subjunctive with examples such as: “I suggest that he go to Eton/I suggest that he goes to Eton/I suggest that he should go to Eton. Have you ever been to Eton? Have you ever visited Eton College. I have been there several times. It is a nice town close to Windsor. I suggest that we come together at the end of the course, I mean, after being successful with our exam. Why not?

Carmen dijo...

María, a very good to the point story!! This is back to better!!! Now they will unerstand me when I said that my students are always the best!!!, won´t you Folkies??

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

Hi, everyone!
Welcome Maria and Robert, I´m new (to the school) but it´s as if I knew you both for years!. I hope to become as good as you are today.

And you Mar, enjoy your trip and, of course, I agree with your proposal, "We should go to Eton" at the end of the course or whenever. Have a nice time!

Ana G.

Carmen dijo...

Roberto, I can´t but agree with you on Mr. and Mrs. Gargery. We have to imagine poor Mrs. Joe who buries all her brothers but Pip, her mother, and is left to look after her father and Pip, we are not told when she became an orphan, so she may have had to battle along, alone to raise Pip "by hand" until she fooled Joe into marrying her!!! Joe is indeed a nice person, but a fool, a good person...but a fool, and then Mrs. Joe doesn´t love him, she probably never did, she was just looking for help to maintain herself and her young brother. She is always angry, first because she has a bad disposition, and then because she has all the responsability within the family, the money, Joe, Pip, the housekeeping...I have to sympathize with her, because with her unattractive ppersonality she manages to "interest" Dickens and look how she comes out in the novel!!!! Sorry, a joke, from the point of view of character building Mrs. Joe is not easily forgotten, I can assure you!!! Any around the place? She is the Lady Bracknell of the lower class!!!

Carmen dijo...

Roberto I am really impressed that you were able to hold your own against such a one as a graduate to be in June!!!! WELL DONE, aren´t we the best? What did I tell you last year?? however it was not us YOU DID IT, if you had not worked that hard, with so much interest, as you did those two years you would not be able to have done it. I´m very pleased, indeed as you must be too.

Carmen dijo...

Ana, haven´t you met who despised their husbands, because they did not get to the top?If a woman doesn´t admire her husband marriage generally fails!! Poor Mrs. Joe has married to survive and help her brother, and married beneath her...another thing women rarely forget...There was a film about this with Ingrid Bergman, set in Australia, perhaps.. Roberto do you know the one I mean?
As to Mr. Joe he is also to be pitied....
Mar, a very good idea but it is not easy to do..however you could try, it would have to be before the end of term...

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

Carmen, is it "Under Capricorn"? Henrietta (Ingrid Bergman)doing the right thing at the cost of her own happiness?

Carmen dijo...

Ana, haven´t you met WOMEN WHO despised their husbands, sorry!
Susan I don´t think remorse is a question of breaking the accepted rules, sometimes we break them and we are remorseless, I think that though education is certainly important in building up a way of being, some people are capable of intuitively feeling for others and the wrongs of others or that done to us. An example of this is the difference existing between the two brothers in the film "Slumdog millionaire",you must allow for nature.
Manolo, I think Mrs. Joe has had a very hard time of live...and on top of this she was ugly!!! Don´t you think beauty affects character? Don´t you think that if everything goes wrong for you, your mother dies, your little brothers die, you are poor, are dependent on others and finally marry somone benath you, rough and silly, good though he is, only because you are the only possibility you have in this life..wouldn´t you be for ever annoyed?

María dijo...

Yes, I would. Many people resign themselves in life because they think they have what they deserve, with no aspirations. I usually dislike the conformist because they underestimate themselves, thinking that they cannot reach the highest. They call it realism, but I call it pessimism. Mrs. Joe thinks she has what she thinks she deserves and resigns herself. For her, Pip is a must, something that she does not do for pleasure; and her husband is the "highest" she thinks she could reach... That´s why she is not happy, but "for ever annoyed", and feels like a martir.
Well, thanks for the warm welcomes. I hope we have a nice time, learning each other. Don´t miss the chance to write because one day, suddenly, you will find yourselves thinking in English!! As to Eton, I will never forget how Carmen introduced us this word (and the subjuntive) with her "I want him to go to Eton". Who would have said to me that I was to be living with an Etonian?
Roberto, I agreed with you about conscience but not about ignorance... Manolo, are you sure you prefer ingorance? Sometimes it would be better not to know, yes... But information is needed!! It is better to know!
I don´t think remorse is a question of rules, but of values. If you have the correct values, well organized, which is a matter of morality, you will be able to differentiate between what is right and what is wrong. If you don´t act according to your values, then the remorse comes. Susana, you say that Mrs. Joe doesn´t feel remorse. She is selfish and blinded, doesn´t see Pip´s role as a mistreated boy but her own role as a martir. Moreover, she likes expressing her displeasure as she does at the lunch party by saying how much she suffers for having had to bring Pip up by hand. I think, however, that as soon as she realizes she was bad to Pip, she will regret, as I don´t believe her to be wicked. If remorse were a matter of rules, the wickest man could regret and actually, they don´t. For instance, the one who was wicked indeed and never regretted was Jane Eyre´s aunt Mrs Reed. Don´t you agree?

carmen dijo...

Yes,I think you are right when you express it with the word values, it is undoubtedly better than rules, I think I was trying to say that those values come out of certain rules in the sense of what is right and what is wrong. If you take the Bible this is very clearly expressed..so once you have your values, if are too short, if you fail then remorse appears on scene. Mrs. Reed, had some values however she did not feel remorse for what she had done to Jane Eyre in sending her away to Lowood, however she did when she told the lie of her death to Uncle Reed...why? I think she really thought that Jane was a naughty unmanagable child, thus she had to be "broken into" as a horse!!! Schooling would do this for her. Thsi brings up a new idea: How can you have some values and act like her? Because humans are influenced by other "vices", shortcomings of their characters: envy, pride, etc. On the other hand we should consider that some people may not admit, but feel remorse.

Mrs. Joe has indeed taken the martyr role and thus all she does is complain about her life.

Yes, María it is indeed AMAZING that you are living with an O.E. (old Etonian), I´m positive that when I did that lesson with you in the SECOND year you never thought that WE WERE GOING TO GET THAT FAR...as I have been saying for two years "We´ve come a long way me and my students..."

Manolo AV2A dijo...

In chapter 5 Dickens cleverly show us the impact on Pip´s heart about the army coming.It was obvious he was thinking he would be under arrest in very few moments. Then, in that circunstances we can imagine Pip sharply paying attention on everything was taking place there.

It was a great and unexpected relief for him the fact of knowing he was not the person who was being looking for. So, he experimented a little more positive sensation but not at all because of the his sister´s curiosity made him one of the "three chosen". He thought it would be a question of time he were found as a criminal cooperator.

At the end it is also very illustrative and expressive the way "my convict" uses for not unveiling his contacts with Pip.

Rosa Intermediate II dijo...

Do you know the film, by David Lean, with Alec Guiness as Pip´s friend? I have seen it. It´s quite good.

María dijo...

Obtaining the forgiveness means soul´s consolation. So I daresay it is much better to admit the sin and not to suffer the remorse in silent... Poeple mistake; why not trying to be forgiven? You could have a bad moment -is it that difficult to say sorry? As the song says: "Sorry seems to be the hardest word"...- but a better life, with the conscience in calm...
Certainly I would not have imagined the long way we have come... None of us!
Chapter V is... intense. Gosh, poor Pip! How many sufferings, how much dread! Pip, frightened of being discovered by his sister, frightened of being looked for by the soldiers, frightened of being thought that he had betrayed "his" convict. Three sufferings that are passed to us, cleverly, as Manolo remarks. And I´d add that you don´t have to be a child to feel like that, do you?. Heart still seems to be a drummer... All of us have been a Pip, and still are... sometimes!
Finally, it is beautiful the way the convict doesn´t betray his little friend. He is so grateful -why doesn´t he tell the truth?- that doesn´t find any reason why to inform on, even though he is denouncing himself of being a burglar! What a relief for Pip... I am delighted for him.

María dijo...

Rosa, thanks for the info, but I won´t watch it till I finish the novel!

Carmen dijo...

Pip´s sufferings are immense, as child suffering is. I mean children can take many things, the loss of their parents, death, etc. in a way better than adults, but irrational fear, or rather fear which becomes irrational. Adults don´t feel this in the same way....
upss go to lesson and come back later

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Regarding chapter nº 6, and what we talked today in the class, in my opinion Pip doesn´t want to confess what he did because he´s worried about the impression that his act wuould cause to Joe, and in this sense Pip is doubtful about telling or not doing it.

There is a sentence that called my attention in particular; "I was too cowardly to do what I knew to be right, as I had been too cowardly to avoid doing what I knew to be wrong". I think that is a long but strong form to say that you are hesitant to say something or you aren´t capable to say it.

What do you thing about Pip´s attitude?

Susana dijo...

Javier, I agree that Pip fears his relationship with Joe can change if he tells him the truth; he fears to lose his confidence. Even probably, Joe would forgive Pip and would understand his behaviour, the risk is too high. Perhaps Joe, at any point, with a word or a glance, would make Pip feel that he is not so long a person to confidence in or that they can’t be chaps any more. In addition Joe could, by mistake, tell Mrs Joe about what had happened.

Sometimes, in real life, it’s difficult to draw the line at the things we must do or not according our conscience if these things imply any hurt for ourselves or for other people. I can think about many of examples of lies or not truths said because the damage of telling the truth was much bigger than not say anything.

Roberto dijo...

Ana is right; the only film of Ingrid Bergman’s shot in Australia, as far as I remember, is “Under Capricorn” (“Atormentada” in Spain). Another masterpiece of Hitchcock’s.

Don’t you think Mrs Joe’s attitude is clearly the consequence of having been unable to choose in the past? I believe there is nothing worse and more frustrating in life than being forced to cope with burdens imposed against one's own wishes and aspirations even if you are not ambitious. You have mentioned Mrs Reed (Jane Eyre) and I cannot but noticing similarities between these two women though under opposite social condition (at least the latter was wealthy). What is the only way to struggle against something of which you will not ever get rid? Making others feel guilty of your wretched condition.

Indeed, Chapter 5 is really intense and another evidence of Dickens’ talent to narrate. The “chase” made me feel one more among the group, excited before so dangerous a mission. And seeing the scene by means of Pip’s eye, you cannot help loving him. So loyal and with a trusting nature, Pip becomes the perfect ally both for the prisoner and Joe. Let us discuss a little about the later. Have you noticed that sometimes it is Pip who seems to portrait the role of adult when they are together? By the way, do you agree with the explanation Joe gives to Pip of the reasons why he behaves so passively with his wife mistreatment?

Manolo AV2A dijo...

In chapter 6 and 7 Pip shows us the heavy and uneasy doubt which is running through his mind. First of all Pip would like telling Joe the whole affair about the pilfering because he is his unique friend. On the other hand Pip is aware if he revealed the truth it would be highly possible things would get worse. In this case Pip opts to do things go on ahead.

Joe is concious about his undergrounds (his father as a drunker, his father beating him and his mother, his no attendance to school... In those conditions he tends to assume Mrs Joe is the substitute of his father, because she uses the equal unfair and agressive acts. By then Joe advices Pip to follow his sister´s recommnendations because she is a master-mind sort of person. The Joe´s objetive is that Pip suffered as less as possible in his traumatic relationship with his sister.

Carmen dijo...

I can´t totally agree with Mrs. Reed and Mrs. Joe being similar. Mrs. Reed was in love with her husband, was fond of her children, particularly her son, and was happy with her social position. Mrs. Joe had married beneath her and had to work as a slave. She is fustrated and takes it out on both joe and Pip. I agree with you, however in that it is annoying to be in a position you don´t want to be in, I mean she was forced to take Joe as husband as her only possibility.
I think that we, like Pip, are afraid to confess misdemeanours because we are frightened of reaction or because we don´t want to disappoint those we love or those who love us.
In my opinion Joe is genuine when he takes all that battering on his shoulders without retailating (I´m not sure whether I have got this word right!!!), he was truly sorry for his mother and for himself and has decided to take the path of goodness and not of that of fighting back, he was strong and he prefers to control himself, I don´t think he is crashed I do think he has chosen freely and happily to behave in this wasy.
Roberto, thanks, I believe it tis that film, my God you are so good where cinema is concerned!!! You know everything!!!

M Carmen. Av2 dijo...

Everybody knows couple very imbalanced, a partner who is hard, aggressive, demanding, frustrated, and unhappy and the other one supporting and suffering this situation. I don’t know if we are forced to stand this situation because of our conscience or maybe we are appealed by these qualities.

Susana dijo...

In chapter six, I perceive Joe as a man fearful of living by his own. During his childhood he was so conditioned by his father’s hammering and his mother’s suffering that he couldn’t develop his own personality, he just survived. Not because of his physical features, (he is strong and he leads without fear the group in the marshes), but due to his natural goodness, he accepted his situation without coming out violently.
When he tells Pip about his parents’ death he doesn’t confess relief of his father’s going off but of his mother’s stopping suffering. And the worst thing for him is lonesome.
Then he acquaints Pip’s sister, and even he is the owner of the forge and he is a strong man, he stands his wife’s behavior and he doesn’t rise. He doesn’t consider stopping Mrs. Joe or contradicting her and there is slight feeling of guilty inside him because he is not that get put out instead of Pip, and because, in some case, he could be like his father. I think he feels inferior to his wife, and his life is more comfortable if he is commanded by a stronger person.
We see sometimes this behavior in people who are abused. They don’t want to go away from their abuser nor take them to court because they are psychologically trapped in the relationship.

Roberto dijo...

Now, we have information enough so as to ascertain that, somehow, every member of this peculiar family is right if we analyze their personal condition separately. Thus, we can see how selfish human nature is. Mrs Joe does not see beyond the burden imposed on her shoulders long ago; Joe, despite having had the opportunity to chose, does not offer shelter to our protagonist because he sitcks to his decision of not making her wife suffer as his mother did. As to Pip, he is also selfish (well, he is just a child) unable to understand what it is hidden behind their behaviour and keeps facing his life as if he were the only one with no hope in life but sadness and unhappiness. Perhaps that is the reason why he sympathies so well with the prisoner.

I loved the following paragraph: "... And then I looked at the stars, and considered how awful it would be for a man to turn his face up to them as he froze to death, and see no help or pity in all the glittering multitude". Is it not beautiful? So true but at the same so poetic, don't you think?

By the way, yesterday I saw "The searchers" (Centauros del Desierto) once more time and do not get surprised when seeing people consider it to be the best film of ever. Pure cinema. Anyway, there was a moment which remembered me one of those unforgettable lessons of Carmen's. You all know that when we studied the subjunctive with "wish", we used "would" mainly to express annoyance, don't you? Well, there was a scene in which one of the main characters is having an argument with the woman in love with him. She is right but he must carry on with his beliefs (after all he is a man) and must part. Thus, the woman breaks into tears and he impotent, furious and desolate cries out : "I WISH YOU STOP CRYING!!!"

Have a nice weekend you all!

Roberto dijo...

sorry, "to CHOOSE"

:-)

Roberto dijo...

sorry sorry sorry

I meant:

"I wish you WOULD stop crying"

María dijo...

Pip was bad, undoubtedly, from my point of view. Chapter VI´s first sentence is the evidence of the following and long Pip´s repentance, when he says: "I hope it had some dregs of good at the bottom of it". Pip is now an adult that remembers that action as wrong, but hoping "some dregs of good" at it.
I also liked the sentence Manolo points out and this one: "Quite an untaught genius, I made the discovery of the line of action for myself". He tries to hidden himself behind the innocence of a child who never lived such a situation, and as an "untaught genius" -unknowing the rules or the values or the right concepts-, he did what was right for himself, selfishly. I think him selfish, as any other child, in fact, is.
It is funny the way Mr. Pumblechook assures the convict´s robbery. It shows how long imagination -vanity?- could be. Imagination, opinions, which usually are understood as true... without any fundation... That´s what happens when one speaks about what one unknows, the consequences of which are mistakes, missunderstandings, misjudgments.

María dijo...

It is great indeed to identify a subjunctive, Roberto! Who could ever think subjunctive in English doesn´t exist??? We are surrounded by them, uncountable times!

cris dijo...

hello mates!, are you going to the theatre tomorrow morning?, what time do we meet?

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

Hi!!! I ´ll be there at 12, Cris we could meet at the entrance. I ´ll go with a friend. (my tel. is 669927168). Anyone else join us? Ana

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Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Roberto, you are absolutly right about the poetic beauty of that paragraph. Furthermore, I think it has deep meaning, and it heplps the story to be more transcendent at that point.
In my opinion it is connected with the last paragraph of this chapter when Pip glanced the sky looking for those stars that, twinkling one by one, couldnt "throw any light on the questions why on earth I was going ti play at Miss Havisham's , and what on earth I was expected to play at."

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

If you haven´t been able to atend the English classes today, this is the subject for the next essay:

When we know finer things, when we see "the club" we despise what we were happy with before -discuss this bearing in mind Great Expectations-

Words: 400 to 500. Carmen´s advice is that we should read the first part of the book. It will help us, I mean, we will be able to write the essay after reading it. Anyway,

Merry Christmas to all of you and to Magdalena and Tilda as well.

p.s. we will continue posting comments.

Carmen dijo...

Happy Xmas to you all!!! Here I am in Santander with my book reading...reading!!!
May you have a very happy New Year, as well, with lots of literature in it.

Roberto dijo...

Merry Christmas to you all!!!

I wish you enjoy these days with good health and in good company, nothing else being required to be content, I dare say. The latter may be your family, your friends, your partner, yourself or Dickens.
I am looking forward to posting a new comment about the last chapters since, from chapter 8, my anxiety to keep reading has increased exponentially as I turn over a new page. There are plenty of issues I would like to discuss about though I do not want to spoil anything about the plot which is to come, so please, tell me what chapters you are supposed to prepare during the holiday.

Just let me quote another astonishing paragraph which expresses so faithfully how our life is, that you cannot but believe Dickens to have a talent to portray human nature: “That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.”

I do remember one day, two years ago when I met 4th year B in EOI GOYA ...

Roberto dijo...

Important mistakes in my last comment.:

"...but believING Dickens to..."

and I sholud have writen JOINED instead of MET

and "every time" I turn over a new page

sorry once more

:-)

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Roberto, answering your question we have already read chapter nine, so it is not a problem if you comment on the paragraph you quoted which appears just at the end of that chapter. It will be nice if you do that as it is full of meaning. In my opinion, one event brings a person so many changes. Doesn´t it?

By the way, we should read the first part of the book during this Season´s Greetings.

I would like to comment on chapter eight. Pip spends the night before his first visit to Miss Havisham in uncle Pumblechook´s home. It is the first time he does so and in my opinion uncle Pumblechook doesn´t offer him a great experience. I mean, it could be a good opportunity for Pip as he is a child (the town center, a different house, a nice bedroom, excellent treat ...) but he has not fond memories of that. Mr. Pumblechook wasn´t able to give him something unforgettable. Pip´s stay only gives him an idea about Pumblechook´s shop and the higt street.

Apart from that, how cruel was the experience he had after spending some hours with Miss Havisham and Estella, especially with the last one. Yes indeed, humiliation normally comes from arrogant people.

It is in this chapter that we see Pip´s new feelings towards Joe, as a result of the treatment he had received: “I wished Joe had been rather more genteelly brought up, and then I should have been so too”. Also towards Mrs Joe: “My sister´s bringinm up had made me sensitive”.

Pip drow a good conclusion: “it may be only small injustice that the child can be exposed to”.

Anónimo dijo...

ESTELA AV-2

hi! merry christmas to all of you!

I would like to comment this chapter too since i´ve found very interesting how Joe notizes Pip´s lie.However bad Pip consider to lie, he tells a very big lie to Mr Pumblechook and Mrs Joe and despite the fact that Joe hasn´t recived neither opportunity to learn nor a proper education he has moral values that are admirable. Pip is becoming a better boy little by little thanks to Joe´s recomentations. I find Joe figure an imprtant one to Pip as well as a very important character in the book.

Anónimo dijo...

ESTELA AV-2

hi! merry christmas to all of you!

I would like to comment this chapter too since i´ve found very interesting how Joe notizes Pip´s lie.However bad Pip consider to lie, he tells a very big lie to Mr Pumblechook and Mrs Joe and despite the fact that Joe hasn´t recived neither opportunity to learn nor a proper education he has moral values that are admirable. Pip is becoming a better boy little by little thanks to Joe´s recomentations. I find Joe figure an imprtant one to Pip as well as a very important character in the book.

Anónimo dijo...

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Roberto dijo...

Thank you for the information, Mar. it is very nice of you.

You have pointed an issue I wanted to discuss as well, the fact that Pip has become conscious of his social condition. But let me talk about this in my next comment.

Hi Estela, Indeed. Joe has given Pip a lesson: you do not need to belong to high society or be cultivated to behave honestly!

COMMENT 1

Many times during the week I have the need to express aloud how I feel but I realize that I lack of the skill to do so neither in English nor my own language and I cannot but envying those people who are able to describe with words their personal condition, sentiments, hopes, fears... Dickens is certainly one among them. Moreover, he has also the capacity for analyzing the reasons why we feel in such way. For instance, I got astonished when I found out why Pip has that sense of timidity and insecurity which he keeps showing from the beginning of the story (chapter 8). Really, reread it again if you can, few times in my life I have seen so accurate a description of the causes which have made us as we are when becoming adults.

Let me quote Jane Austen concerning this issue to give you a means of comparison regarding this issue. You will see that she is good but compared with Dickens’, there is no doubt the latter is better, quite better. Here you have: “Shyness is only the effect of a sense of inferiority in some way or other. If I could persuade myself that my manners were perfectly easy and graceful, I should not be shy”

Anónimo dijo...

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MAR (5 A) dijo...

Estela, I agree with you about Joe, so, Pip loves him. It was in chapter six that we read: “I love Joe, perhaps for no better reason in those early days than because the dear fellow let me love him …”

Roberto, you talked about the author I completely agree with you. I also think that Dickens is a master of his prose. You suggested that we read chapter eight again. You spoke about Pip’s timidity and insecurity. In my opinion, in that chapter Pip shows us his sense of powerlessness and his low self esteem. He punishes himself when in reaction to Estella’s treatment he goes to the wall and took a hard twist at his hair.

I would like to comment on the last paragraph in chapter nine – quoted by Roberto-. I think that “that memorable day” was the first link of the chain, in other words, without that memorable day the chain would be missing. So we will know as we read the book about the rest of Pip’s chain’s links. Our own iron or gold chain also started one memorable day. Didn’t it?

Roberto dijo...

Not many comments so far. What a pity!

I guess you all are busy. So am I, nevertheless, I would like to point out some interesting topics I have found when reading the last few chapters. I have just mentioned such issues without doing it deeply (sorry). I would have liked to do so but there is no having any spare time these days.

COMMENT 2

Until now, Pip had always thought his condition to be rather miserable, however, he was not aware of such condition by compering it with a different one, in this case socially better. I guess this often happens in many areas of our life but I think there is nothing worse and painful than seeing others around us better situated, not only regarding wealthy but also due to education. He becomes sensible of his social status, this want usually leading to the loss of confidence and self-esteem (well, not everyone is like that but I dare say plenty of people feel are under such condition) and, instead of judging those “better prepared” on account of what they really are, so to say, setting apart material things, we cannot but feeling frustrated and disliking our personal situation.

Anyway, in his first visit to Miss Havisham’s dwelling, Pips discovers a new world, glooming, surrealist and extravagant but interesting, sophisticated and full of mystery at the same time. The way we are being told about both such a place and the new characters appearing in the story, once more by means of Pip’s eye, highly impressed me. Those dark corridors made me really feel so bleak an atmosphere and Miss Havisham’s chamber is certainly worth discussing about, is it not?

On the other hand, I got also surprised by observing Pip’s behaviour in his new occupation. What is your opinion about that, mainly regarding his interaction with Eliza? What about miss Havisham’s? She seems to be rather foolish but there is something in her talk and manners that suggest that we should look beyond the surface to unclose something quite exciting beneath which might give sense to so atypical behaviour.

Roberto dijo...

Sorry, I meant PEOPLE ARE instead of PEOPLE FEEL ARE

If you see any more mistakes, please feel free to mention them. I will be glad to correct them.

:-)

Anónimo dijo...

Hello to all of you! I´m sorry for being lost during last weeks. My best wishes for all you in the New Year.I´ll see you next week.

María dijo...

Hello and Happy new year to you too. I have not read chapter X yet, but I already know Miss Havisham, Estella and new Pip.
The criticism is really badly received, but it makes us realize things that before were unnoticed. To be poured cold water on is unpleasant, but makes us awake. Estella opens Pip´s eyes. For the first time, he looks at himself from Estella´s eyes and doesn´t like what he sees. He gets angry and wishes Joe and himself were wiser, better educated, less ignorant. It is curious the way he punishes Joe first. Poor Joe. Pip doesn´t recall Ms. Joe or Mr. Pumblechook, but his beloved uncultivated brother-in-law...
I like this relationship between Pip and Joe very much. Pip loves him -Joe let Pip love him-, however punishes him and wishes somehow he was... different. Joe being common -"a mere blacksmith"-, represents all that Pip may be going to avoid.
A very good topic of your compositions. Indeed when you know "the good", you don´t want to come back. Is that good at Miss Havisham´s? Let´s see...

MAR (5 A) dijo...

Well, my opinion about Pip’s resolution of making himself uncommon makes me think that he took the opportunity just in time, I mean, Biddy is the person who can help him, and Pip’s courage made him have the clever idea of getting out of Biddy everything she knows.

I agree with Maria when she says that Estella opens Pip’s eyes. Pip wants to be an educated person.

Roberto, in my opinion, Miss Havisham, that mysterious “woman in white” who still dresses in white rich materials, bridal shoes, bridal flowers in her hair and who has not seen the sun for many years, is a person who will never recover.

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

Happy new year! During the holidays I had time to go to the cinema and theatre. By the way, I went to see "Angelina o el honor de un brigadier" and CHRISTMAS CAROL. So, I want to share with you - quoted: "I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. Oh, tell me I may sponge away the writing on this stone!"
you that MONEY IS NOT EVERYTHING IN LIFE, that WE HAVE TO BE BETTER PERSONS.
And coming back to Great Expectations I agree with your comments but I´m really impressed with Estella´s behaviour and what she asked Pip at the end of chapter 8: "Why don´t you cry?" As Pip told her he didn´t want to cry, she said "You do" "...and you are near crying again now".
I think Miss Havisham had been hurt by a man, who had broken her heart and Estella is learning to be insensitive with man, don´t you think so?

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Ana, I´m sure that you enjoyed the play Christmas carol.

About Miss Havisham I think that she has been brainwhashing Estella to break men´s hearts because she wants to protect her from the same painful heartbreak she suffered.

Comment on chapter ten I´m intrigued by the stranger who keeps watching Pip. When the stranger stirs his drink with a file, the same file Pip stole for the convict on the marshes. I think that Pip believes that the man has been sent by his convict and is terrified that his secret will be revealed.

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M Carmen.- Adv2 dijo...

Happy New Year to everyone!!!
I had to say that Roberto must be plenty of energy writing so long and so good Comments, he likes Dickens, me too. Please Roberto could you tell me on which page, in chapter VIII I can find “Shyness is only the effect of sense of inferiority …..” that you wrote in your Comment 1. Thank you.
According your Comment 2 I think people around us better situate, not only regarding wealthy but also due to education is not bad, they can be our inspiration. It is worse to see people around us ill, starving and suffering.

Carmen dijo...

Happy New Year to you all!!
I´m back after a ver busy holiday, i don´t know if busy is the right word, but i have not been able to read our posts or post myself! This is the first time i open my computer and I´ve read Roberto´s and Mar´s so I will say that I have found them very interesting. Yes, Roberto I also noticed your first quote, the one about the chain of events...you sure ahve experienced it yourself. I´ve also liked the quote on shyness, yes one has to admit that if one is shy one is because we perceive flaws...Another thing is how can anyone make us so conscious of our shortcomings as Estella does with Pip? Surely that cannot solely be imputed to his shyness...don´t you think that her arrogance displayed on someone who is inferior, in education and manners, produces this effect?
I´ve advanced quite a bit during my long stays in Campoo, while my daughter was practising her skiing, and i´m definetly enjoying the reading more than on previous ocasions which proves that the more you read a book the more you like it, there are always new things, funnily enough, i think it is because we are different,s o we notice things that before went unnoticed.

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Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Yesterday we commented Pip's attitude towards Joe, and I agree with Carmen in the way that the reader may despise him for that. However I think that it is sadness, because of Joe’s narrow mind, that made Pip be like that, and not malice. He still loves and respects Joe, but now that he has been introduced in other environment, he can compare.

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María dijo...

I think sadness is not Pip´s feeling, but worse than that: shame. However, I agree that Pip loves Joe, because we usually want people we love to change. We don´t like the way they are sometimes and, why not, we can feel shame somehow. It is not a very healthy feeling, but it does exist in human beings, don´t you think? As I said in my last comment, when Pip feels ashamed of himself after Estella´s description, he "punishes" Joe -the one he loves-, not his sister or the "diabolical cornchandler". He, afterwards, being an adult, complains about the injustice he was victim of, but he himself made use of it over poor Joe, whose lives, previous and current ones, didn´t allow him to be "uncommon".
On the other hand, Ms Havisham is a very good character to analyze and... to pity, as far as our imagination could let us think about what happened to her. Poor her, disgraced all her life by what a man didn´t do, and poor Estella, living with such a wretched... I don´t reach to understand what Pip was doing at her house..., playing, figthing, being critized... But he enjoyed it, after all... He was a good boy and got the reward -maybe part of it?-. Again I am wondering if I´ve lost something... Dickens does tell us many things, masterly told actually, but does not tell anything!! I need to know!!
By the way, I loved the paragraph in chapter XI -I don´t know where you go- when he describes the three ladies and the gentleman as "toadies and humbugs". There are lots of toadies and humbugs out there, aren´t there?

Roberto dijo...

Mar, are not you anxious to know more about Miss Havisham’s past to see why she has become like that? On the other hand, you are right, that new character appearing just for a while on the stage has puzzled Pip, however, I do not know why but it surprised me more the time Pip meets that other child within Miss Havisham’s dwelling, not only because of the latter but also because I did not expect Pip to be so active and “striking back so hard”, like Jane Eyre. According to this and what Jesús suggests in his comment, we can see that Pip is not so pitiful, so good and blameless as we thought him to be. And let me tell you something, when Pip shows himself shameful about Joe’s lack of education and manners before Miss Havisham and Estella, I noticed that Pip, after all, is like almost everybody else: there is always something to be ashamed of in those we love and despite loving them, when the opportunity presents itself, we will “despise” them come what may. Perhaps it is like “Pedro” who loved Jesus but when he was going to be caught, he did proclaim not knowing him three times.

M Carmen, thank you for your compliment. I am glad you enjoy Dickens. I believe that every single word in his novels, as far as the ones I have read up to now are concerned, explains and gives plenty of information to the reader.

I am afraid that the quote you mention is not in this novel but in Sense and Sensibility (Chapter 17)

I think you are right Carmen but in cases like that, I believe that what it really puzzles us and makes us with no resources to admit such inferiority is the fact that we never want to hear others saying aloud and plainly all those defects and things we lack of. On the other hand, by behaving like that, we are letting the others, who are “superior”, believe themselves to be so when, actually, there is always someone superior to us in one way or the other and not necessarily from the social point of view.

Roberto dijo...

Sorry Maria, I have seen that you have just posted a new comment but I have no time now to read and answer it. I will try to do it tomorrow.

:-)

María dijo...

I noticed you didn´t read my comment because you basically say the same as me!!!! It´s funny, isn´t it?
The only thing I want to express is that I never thought Pip to be that goody goody. He is good at remorse..., a child. You can see it in the first sentence of chapter VI, when he is referring -when adult- to the convict: "I hope it had some dregs of good at the bottom of it".
Otherwise, I do believe Joe to be good; however, Pip wants him to be different -wiser, uncommon-. That´s life, goodness is not enough. We don´t look up to goodness...

Susana dijo...

In previous chapters we have read how Stella makes Pip, for first time, be ashamed of his coarse hands, of his thick boots and of calling the Knaves, Jacks. Then, Pip tells Joe that he feels miserable and blames him for having been taught to call Knaves at the cards Jacks. At the end of the chapter nine, alone in his room, Pip realizes that not only he, but Joe and his sister are common if he compares them with Stella and Ms. Havisham.

But in chapter ten, I think Pip goes up one step because he looks for the way to make himself uncommon. His meeting Stella has woken him up to the desire of being educated, and this attitude makes him significantly different from the other characters in the novel. Joe appears to be happy as an illiterate hard worker, living with a woman who despises him; Ms. Joe keeps frustrated being married with a blacksmith just to have economical support and deals with this frustration mistreating Joe and Pip; and finally none of the scholars show interest to get the Bidy learning.

I think that in life we find people who even not being very well educated do their best to learn more, according to their possibilities. But we find also those who having spent more time at school don’t realize, as Pip, education is the door for a better life, or those who are too proud or lazy and think that they don’t need to learn more and despise the subjects in which they are ignorant.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Yes indeed Roberto, the more I know about Mss Havisham the more I want to know. After reading about her birthday day (chapter eleven) I think that she is very eccentric, do you agree?

We also know about Miss Havisham's relatives who pretend to care about her. As Maria says the paragraph which describes those “toadies and humbugs” is fantastic. In my opinion, and thinking about the author, the contrast between the serious and the comic intensifies the serious part, because those toadies and humbugs absolutely hate Pip. I think that we can meet “toadies and humbugs” quite often.

Carmen dijo...

This is the second time this morning that I lose my post!! I am particularly thick this morning!!!! Roberto in answer to you second comment you have picked out Miss Havisham as a remarkable character very suitably, she is unforgetable in her gloomy house, her bleak prospects and her evil attitude. She wants to hurt and she does, consciously! What is there in women that can be thus affected by a lost lover? Men, hardly ever react in this way, well it tales them minutes to forget women:
"Uno para enamorarlas,
otro para conseguirlas,
otro para abandonarlas,
dos para sustituirlas
y una hora para olvidarlas".(D. Juan Tenorio. There are many instances in Spanish literature of women who do not recover from such a loss:"Dña. Rosita, la soltera" "la casa de los 7 balcones", and if you remember Miss Pross, well, that is another woman sticking to a rogue, though this time it is a brother...the truth is that they become revengful and spend their lives moaning about their ill-usage, suffering, thus making the people who surround them unhappy and miserable, as their only pleasure is this: hurting others..piece of advice, girls: recover, look about you, there are other men around, normally these rogues and our idea of them is totally different, so accept the situation and allow yourselves to be happy, or if not contented...You were in love because of your imagination... we´ll see what happens to Miss Havisham...
As to Pip, he sows very clearly that when we see better things we like them and we immediately despise what pleased us before..then why doesn´t Joe want to "move on" and belong to this new world of Pip´s? Last year we saw Jane Eyre quite comfortably accepting Mr. Rochester ahnd...but notice that she was not comfortable either in elegant society, i mean when they marry they don´t mix with Mr. Rochester´s previous circle but with hers...so there is always an inferiority complex there, there is always an insecurity felt which prevents the "climber" from being totally relaxed in his new and better situation. Joe perceives this, as he is naturrally intelligent,and willingly choses to remain where he is. In my opinion unless you accept what you are and where you come from, you cannot be happy. We have an instance of this in our Royal Family, don´t we?

Carmen dijo...

Ana, thanks for your quotes and well done with all these activities. Yes Estella has the ability to see into Pip´s feelings and does not hesitate to humiliate him. María , you are absolutely right when you say that you need to have things pointed out. I, myself have been through this mortifying, yet necessary exerience and have felt exactly like Pip... and have corrected those little things.
Mar, Estella is being trained to shield herself against pain inflicted by men...and perhaps to inflict it?

Roberto dijo...

You're right Maria. We've said nearly the same. I also think Pip is ashamed of Joe because he has always admired him and now sees Joe turning out to be rather common. Besides, don't you think that when you see those "defects" and wants in others, we normally crtizise them more bitterly because it is a way of making feel ourselves better? Can you see what I mean?

Carmen, this time I am afraid that I do not and cannot agree with you when you say that men tend to forget inmediately the person they love or sooner than women do. However, if you are right, I will say that there are always expecptions.

Carmen dijo...

A very quick post before going to the theatre. Well, very very interesting, I agree with María when she says that Pip is not so good, I don´t know why wor where we get this impression at the beginning of the book, i think it is because he is so battered by his sister and because he is quiet and because of his relationship with Joe, but this image is crushed as soon as we are told of his base, ow feelings, understandable though they are!!!! I probably dislike him as i recognize myself in some of his thoughts!!!(isn´t it horrible????)
Yes, Roberto, as you see you are right when you say that as we discover things we are ashamed of other discoveries like that those we love and admire have deficiencies, as well. It is true that we should not feel this or by admitting it give others the chance of taking advantage over us..but, on the other hand I think that admitting things to oneself and then, trying to improve does not diminish others´ (the worthy, of course)opinion about us, on the contrary it breeds admiration. Pip admires the boy at Miss Havisham´s for "his spirit", for trying, though he had been repeteadly knocked down by him!!
Mar very accurate on the description of the toadies, and María...we some, don´t we?
Roberto, you are "a good boy", thus support the species...but, come on, how many stories can you produce of a man who will love a woman for ever??? I have to admit that they exist, for example in Sens and Sensibility there is one, Captain Wentworth, in "persuassion", but those two novels, written by a woman show the ideal man, the type women like, or say they like...the rogue is quite attractive to us (how many times have I said we were silly?)

María dijo...

Yes, the funniest is to be oneself the rogue... Estella is a rogue, she thinks she has the control, she is beautiful (her power, wasn´t it?) and has been taught to hate men, ridicule them and make them suffer. She will achieve it and have fun, but will she achieve the happiness with such a bitchy, cold behaviour? Miss Havisham´s poison is in the very Estella´s inside, let´s see if she can change -she is a child-, for her own sake... Come on Pip, rescue her!
Suuuuure, we are toadies and humbugs... but nice ones... I agree with you, Carmen, when saying that it is much better to admit our "deficiences" to ourselves and try to improve them. Humility is not synonymous with inferiority. Inferiority -moral inferiority, I`m not referring to social status- is a personal feeling, which comes from inside. No matter how the others think us to be, but how we feel ourselves, our pride and self-esteem.
I´ve found very interesting Carmen´s comment about preferring the good-despising the past-belonging to the "new world". I think that once you know something different and better than you had before, it´s quite difficult -I´d say impossible- to come back. And not to want to come back is a kind of despising your... origin? However, our origin marks us, or should mark us... Is this that insecurity -I think it is insecurity and not inferiority complex, because of what I´ve said above- you mention? And you are right, why is Joe so comfortable -satisfied or resigned?- that does not want to "move on"?
There always seems to be an instance in our Royal Family... ahah.

María dijo...

Roberto, you are the holy exception...

Anónimo dijo...

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MAR (5ºA) dijo...

After reading and re-reading the latest posts from Carmen and from the graduated English students (Roberto and Maria) it seems that we (the rest) are shocked. They are really good, but nevertheless, we must “move on” (Joe doesn´t do that) because we are, as Pip is, good apprentices.

Sorry about my next personal comment, but I want to share with you my annoyance. I was sitting on a bench for a few minutes last Friday, after our English class because I was a little “sick” -as you know I was under the weather these days- and I left my English folder (with my New profiency Gold grammar book, with my notebook and some English papers with the articles, poems, homework re the subjunctives, etc) there. When I realized I went back to the bench but I didn´t find it. I know that is has solution, I will wait a little more before buying a new book, just in case someone who has my folder calls me. I also sent Georgiana an e mail as I want to make a copy of some English papers and she was very kind to me (thank you very much indeed). Fortunately, I always keep my “Great Expectations” in my handbag. I could obviously buy a new one but the very unique Carmen´grammar´s explanations which appear in mine are a little treause (for me). Sorry again about my comment but I´m upset.

Going back to Great Expectations, it is in chapter twelve that we read about Miss Havisham´s teachings to Estella: “Break their hearts my pride and hope break their hearts and have no mercy”. In my opinion, this sentence should be a warning to Pip.

Can I ask you something?: Is mercy a human attribute? Can we initiate mercy on our own or is it a religious concept only available for some people?.

Ana RG Avanz.2 dijo...

Hello everybody:
I had been studying very hard, (as exams are very near ....) but as I read your message Mar, I wanted to tell you that I am terribly sad about what has happened to you last friday.
And as I think that MERCY is a virtue, that comes from our soul and you can find it, shining in a singular way, in comforting (console)the one being sad... like I supposse you must be feeling now.
Mar, has it happened near the school? Have you asked the secretary or the person at the front desk?
Anyway, I can lend you my books a few days if you want to make some photocopies waiting for some good news!
Cheer up!
Ana

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Carmen dijo...

Mar, I so understand you...if I lost some of my books with notes on them...i´d be really annoyed, appat¡rt from the fact that losing anything, particularly friends is horrible...however you have not lost your novel, your information, already in your head, and...us, we´ll help you with anything you need!!! Mind you, we are only doing what has been done by you previously.
Mercy can be felt and taught, remember the nazi in the camp, he learnt it. I believe a person can learn ANYTHING, this is why I do believe in education. Mar, you are very very good at English, they worked a lot and like literature and anlysing, we did it 4 times that´s why they are so good, you´ve only done it once and now..you´l be as good as they are!
Pip should be careful with the lot in miss Havisham´s...those words are indeed ominous...but will he? Perhaps he is weak himself and thus susceptible to glamour and Estella was glamour for him, aren´t we all?

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Goodness me! Carmen, What can I say? not a lot! thank you very much INDEED.
Yes, I think that as students I/we must do our best, I/we must improve every single day, it requires a big effort but we musn´t despise this very unique opportunity.

Ana, thank you very much, and thank you to all my fellow students, I know that I can ask you tomorrow. I will borrow from you some English papers and I will make some copies.

Susana (5º A) dijo...

Mar, I’m sorry about what happened to you on Friday. If you need any notes, please tell me and I'll get them photocopied.

Maria, after reading last chapters I’m also feeling sorry for Stella. Ms. Havishams looks me now quite cruel about her. Anything what happened to Ms. Havishams in the past (I hope we will be told more about it along the novel), she decided to break with her previous life, and to create a new one where her broken heart was safe. But everything in that world suits her, and she doesn’t mind hurting anyone. When she encourages Stella to break men hearts, she is not looking for Stella’s benefit but for her revenge. Stella will be an upper-class and wealthy woman but I’m not sure if she will be able to get rid of the hate Ms. Havishams has sown in her.
How different it is Ms. Havishams’ influence on Stella to Joe’s influence on Pip. I’ve read now chapter fourteen, and I’ve found really touching the paragraph in which Pip explains how despite his being ashamed of Joe sometimes, he highly appreciates his kindness. I think Dickens is great when he makes Pip say: “It is not possible to know how far the influence of any amiable honest-hearted duty-going man flies out into the world”. Don’t you think it is touching? I also think that Pip is quite intelligent because he recognizes Joe’s values.

Mar, about mercy I think we can find mercy in many human relationships when someone chooses to forgive when he could hurt.

Roberto dijo...

Hello,

I have not read your last comments so in this brief post I will just say that Chapters 17 & 18 have moved me. I could see feelings, which I believe we all have passed through, expressed so plainly, clearly and accurately that I am truly all astonishment. Amazing.

Bravo

María dijo...

Mar, poor you! But you see that everybody is very willing to help you! Mar, thanks for saying we are good, but as Carmen says, you are too! It just depends on how hard you work and how much you want to be better at it. I still have lots to learn and to improve. But we, all together, will!
As to your question about mercy, a master once thought about it like that:
The quality of mercy is not strain'd,
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath: it is twice blest;
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes:
'Tis mightiest in the mightiest: it becomes
The throned monarch better than his crown;
His sceptre shows the force of temporal power,
The attribute to awe and majesty,
Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings;
But mercy is above this sceptred sway;
It is enthroned in the hearts of kings,
It is an attribute to God himself;
And earthly power doth then show likest God's
When mercy seasons justice. Therefore, Jew,
Though justice be thy plea, consider this,
That, in the course of justice, none of us
Should see salvation: we do pray for mercy;
And that same prayer doth teach us all to render
The deeds of mercy. I have spoke thus much
To mitigate the justice of thy plea;
Which if thou follow, this strict court of Venice
Must needs give sentence 'gainst the merchant there.

Guess who?

Susana, I agree with you as far as Pip´s feelings to Joe are concerned. However Pip considers his life besides Joe not to be enough to be happy. He is thirsty for more, for glamour as Carmen says, for a higher level life, for being a respetable -uncommon- gentleman, worthy of the handsomest of women...

Roberto, I have read chapter XVI (or XVII?) and I am really hooked on it! Pip and Biddy´s conversation is quite... unusual! Pip doesn´t shut up! He found in Biddy his confidant, but... did she want that? Anyway, I won´t say anything else as I don´t know if you have reached that part. We have to comment it!!

MAR 5º a dijo...

Yes Maria, the master is William Shakespeare.

(I must re-read it). Thank you.

Carmen dijo...

I´m so glad you posted the mercy speech, it is fantastic, describes it so well, I will post in in the blog itself and we can work on it, the problem is that I don´t seem to have time this year to sit!!! I wonder why?
I´ve also liked Susan´s post about the effect of goodness on the world and how unrelevant it is wihtin it, i mean it passes unnoticed for the world as such, and this makes me think what stays? If you think about it vice seems to be much more popular. There are thousands of examples i can think of: Josefina, Napoleón, Caín, Judas 8one of the best known, Hitler, etc. Admitedly there are some good also on the list, but these we have to think about they don´t crop up!!

Carmen dijo...

Hi and goodbye..unto England!!! But before going I want to mention that we had an interesting class, didn´t we? I think it has been interesting to see how two of our girls saw something of mrs. Joe in them, and one of our boys saw a lot of Mrs. Joe in his wife!!! It is horrible to see that we have this grievances inside us hat women are like that. Dickens is a maser in portraying those little things, those shortcomings in the nature of humans. It has been our turn in this chapter, but don´t worry, girls, they will find theirs too.
I will be going to the theatre in London, to see "An inspector calls" which we saw last year here. We can compare both performannces, so i´m really excited about it. María has told me that there is a very good, i think Van Gogh (I hope I got it right!) exhibition, but I hardly think that I can take Magdalena and "Cousin Carlota" there when they are both dying to ramsack the shops, I hope that where mine is concerned, only with her eyes, but the other one has declared to her mother "that she has absolutely NO-THING to wear" (11 years old!), which proves that women´s nature comes with birth it is not acquaired. See you on Tuesday.
By the way I´d like to change Friday 19th Feb.(we have a lesson) for Friday the 12th, would it be all right????

M AR (5º A) dijo...

I have reread chapter fourteen as I liked it very much. It is a very short chapter full of meaning. Each paragraph has a Pip´s estatement. I think that Pip is a very conscientious person, however I was surprised when he said: “how much of my ungraious condition of mind may have been my own fault, how much Miss Havisham´s, how much my sister´s”.
I wonder why he doesn´t add: how much Estella´s????. We cannot forget that his first meeting with Estella took place “that memorable day” and it made great changes in Pip. I was also the first link of his chain.

I must admit that I was intrigued by the police investigation into the attack on Mrs. Joe, however, it is a comedy of errors and false accusations. The only things known for sure are that the candle in the room was blown out and she was hit on the back of the head with a rusted convict's leg iron while she faced the fireplace. Let´s wait and see ... I must continue with the reading.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Indeed I agree with Carmen in the attitude of the wives who interfere in tasks of her husband´s. I think it may be because they do not really trust us, by thinking her opinion as more valuable than ours. In my opinion all of that is based in the difficulty (not only for women) to put in the other shoes.

If I am able, I will come back later to write a little bit about Mrs. Havisham´s unfair, mercylees and abusive attitude towards our poor little Pip.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Carmen, we can talk about having English class on Friday the 12th tomorrow. It shouldn´t be a problem ...

Carmen dijo...

Well, a very uneventful week-end posting!!! I´d like to tell you about my weekend in London. I saw "An inspector calls" and it was fantastic. Teh acting was wonderful and very easy to follow, considering that we had a eleven-year-old, who, by the way, did all the shopping she wanted!!! She was thrilled, another effect of clothes on women, we actually exxperience happiness...
Jesús you are very right when you say that women don´t trust men...it the mother side in us...why do we stick so much to pattern???
As to the assault, or rather attack, I´m thoroughly curious as to whom it could be..I´ve forgotten!!! It´s very clever the way Dickens gives information....convicts again??? Could it have been Pip´s taken his revenge on Mrs. Joe for her ill-treatment of the boy???
Thanks for the change, but it may not be necessary. I´ll let you know

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

Hi mates. I´m sorry for being lost last weeks. I´ll attend tomorrow to the classes. Next Wednesday I´ll go to Galway, Ireland. Any reccomendations? I´d like to receive information if it´d be possible.

By the way, I´d like to point out Pip´s feelings in chapters 14th and 15th. In one hand, he realizes that is more miserable feel ashamed of home (relatives), on the other hand, he refuses to accept an employment in order to stay with Joe. But at the same time, he feels bad thinking about the possibility that Stella comes to the forge.

María dijo...

Hi there! You´re so hooked that you cannot post comments??? No wonder... The more I read, the more I am interested in the plot. Though, I already know who made the assault... Which chapters are you reading now? I am a little bit lost... and looking forward to commenting them!
As you may know, I am working as au pair, and hardly ever can I find some time to read. But now, I find myself stealing minutes to get the book! Though, honestly, I should add that my life here would be a very good plot for another novel!! Dickens should have known me to write my particular story!
I also liked An inspector calls very much. It was easy to understand and the acting... well, quite English! I am afraid that they did much better than Valladares or Cueto, though I cannot speak too aloud as that time last year I didn´t go to the theatre!
To theatre lovers, I will tell you that if you are thinking of coming to London soon, there are marvellous tickets for a tenner in Lastminute webpage!! I´ve just found it out and I am quite excited!!
I agree with Mar that that chapter was full of meaning. I think Pip is feeling a mixture of things... He is a child, doesn´t know how to manage with things!
As to Jesus´ comment about wifes and husbands... Could you explain what you exactly mean? I know I would understand you better, had I been in class with you! I miss those class moments -funny and interesting moments- when Carmen linked novel´s situation with our current lives. There used to be many "coincidences"... Because all of us know Miss Havishams, Pips, Joes, Pumblechooks, Estellas... Don´t we?

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Maria, Carmen also told us that the play was fantastic, also for the young girls.

Yes indeed, we are engrossed in the book as well. We have alredady spoken about chapters sixteen and seventeen today.

In my opinion, chapter seventeen invites us to draw a comparison between Estella and Biddy. Their level of compassion, attitude towards rank in society and relationship with Pip are very different. I also think that Biddy is a character that always seems to do the right thing. On the other hand the more different they are, the better for Pip. I mean, he is learning a lot thanks to they (both), doesn´t he?.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

I agree with both of you Maria and Mar. There are a lot of coincidences between the book and our real life. Although Pip is learning thanks to the two girls, he refuse to forget Estella, and despise his feelings about Biddy.
Sometimes we tend to complicate our life despising right things and complaining when it´s too late for coming back. What do you think about this?

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

I agree with Javier in the way he describes human attitude when they choose. Furthermore I consider that Pip´s attitude is frecuent in real life (especially in women). At least it was a surprising lesson when I was in my teens. Women usually chose the problematic, proud and less convenient men (features of which made them be more atractive). I think it is the same with Pip who is still dazzled by a new enviroment and an appealing girl. We usually desire what is unreachable, so that Biddy would not be preferred.

It was great to discover Biddy wittiness, when she takes pity of Pip`s interests of a life less common. I think it is the same here and now, when we get an idea into the head to live over our posibilities (a brand new car, a new flat,...), and it is really sad when you focus your happiness in such a unreachable aim. Even when the target is possible, that persistance makes your happines improbable.

Actually I used to do it all my life (when I have a car, a girlfriend, a flat, a job,...) and at the end it causes you a false feeling of unhappines by not letting you enjoy your life as it is at that particular moment.

I have just re-read this post, and now it sounds a bit as though it were a sermon of Mr Wopsel´s!

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Ups!

FreQuent!

Less common life!

When I wrote "when I have a car, a girlfriend, a flat, a job,..." I actualy mean ...O that I have a car,..!"

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

I would like to go into Biddy´s character. If you look back to The painted veil, you will remember that the chacacters were extremely good fellows or extremely bad, and due to that the plot has not enough strength. In Biddy´s case, she is developed as someone intermediate with virtues and vices, and even her witty makes her more interesting. It is funny when Pip wondered how she could manage to be sewing and having an eye on Pip`s tasks, and it is something that I wonder as well every single day: I am not able to do two things at the same time. It happens usually to men. In my case, even when I chew chewing gum, I can have problems to do another thing! I work as a teacher and I always ask those student who are distracted, to make them understand they have to be aware. Men are usually surprised without having a clue of what we were talking about. However it is never the same with female students: they know precisely what it was even when they were chattering or amused!

After reading chapter seventeen, I wanted to take Pip by the shoulders, and shake him "Come on!, open your eyes!" Indeed it was a touching scene, to read their relationship, and how tactful Biddy is,to the point to make him think of her as a better alternative to Estela, but I am afraid Pip not be so practical a boy.

Carmen dijo...

Well I see that the blog is becoming alive. María you are Englishing (I´ve just coined a new word!!!), I can see this in your vocabulary, you´ve picked it up from Flossie and the rest..well done. It´s fantastic that you have found last minute tickets and so cheap. I knew you could get them but had to go to the theatre and early in the morning so it was a fag.
Mar you are right, when you anlize Biddy´s actions, she seems to do the right thing always. It has always amazed me that some people do the right things and it is not difficult for them to identify what is right. I don´t belong to the group!!!! I´ve made a heck of a lot of mistakes and seem to have learnt through making those mistakes (which is even worse!!!). One of these days I´ll have to analize myself!!!
Jesús a very good comparison with girls and boys, where Pip appears to be attracted by the complicated, but some men are like that don´t you think? there is something that draws us to those who hurt us, don´t know some, admittedly are more liable to this than others, I think it may have to do with ambition, but I have to think about the reasons more.
As to the "I want to be a gentleman" that shows Pip to be ambitious and clear-minded, yet it doesn´t somehow, go totally with his character, he does not look to me as if he is the sort of person that fights to get things, what do you think?

Roberto dijo...

Hello everyone,
After several days having been unable to post at all, it has taken me time to catch up with your last comments. It is amazing, sometimes the more you wish to do something, the less spare time you have to do it. Anyway, you have mentioned many topics such as inferiority (Maria I do not agree with you since inferiority has always something to do with society and the environment surrounding us, doesn’t it?), mercy (Mar, first of all I am sorry to hear about your loss, I do know how important those notes are. I think mercy may be something inherent in our nature though it may be learned too as Carmen has said. Is not Pip already changing his values and perception of things because of this?), Stella & Joes’s influence on Pip (Susana, the quote you posted liked me very much as well and I certainly feel sorry about Stella, however, she has beauty so, after all, she will have power in the future I believe), Biddy and Pip talking together (Maria, I loved such a moment and I will say something about it later on), goodness (Carmen is right, why do we always feel more attracted to vice, sin and evil?), Joe (he has eventually interested me and I must acknowledge respecting him more after all what has happened until now and I will try to write a little bit about it in posts to come), Dickens’ talent to portrait human nature (I agree with Carmen again. Those little things which affect us daily and make our life what it is, are so well described that it relieves yourself because many times, in my case, I cannot express what I feel and that is frustrating indeed), Pip’s doubts about what will bring him happiness: Biddy or Stella (Javier you are right, why do we always go for something we cannot reach or which seems to make us suffer?), Biddy’s character (Jesus, I do wish to talk about her because I believe she is the sort of woman I like and I will give you my reasons later on), acting rightly (indeed, I am unable to distinguish between what is right and what is wrong till I see the consequences).

I must be going if I want to arrive to my lectures but I must finish this post

Sorry about grammar mistakes, I have not time to check my comment.

Roberto dijo...

important mistake: ...I liked it very much the question you mention...

2nd: it relieves you

You see, everyone makes mistakes.

María dijo...

Pip is not practical, men are not practical. Women are practical... If not at first, at the end, when we stop to think. The problem is that men don´t stop to think and are moved by always the same. So, I agree with you, Jesús, but don´t know if you now agree with me. Very funny to see how you see male and female students´ awareness of things. In that case, I think it´s not a matter of doing two things at the same time, but a matter of curiosity, something sticked to us. We know how to pretend, to seem as if we were not there, looking or listening, but picking everything.
Biddy versus Estella is the most interesting thing of the novel up to now for me. I will write more later...

María dijo...

ups, "stuck to us", sorry.

María dijo...

It is somehow unfair how Pip "uses" Biddy as his confidant, without knowing before hand whether she wants to be so or not. After all, Pip knows Biddy likes him. It is as if it was what has to be: two guys from the town that get married, keep a small, modest business, have children, don´t move anywhere ever, and die, their graves being in the graveyard of the church, besides the marshes, for ever. This was Biddy´s idea of her life, wasn´t it? And it is quite dissapointing to find out that the other person doesn´t think like you at all. Pip is being selfish. However, I can understand him. He needs to have the possibility of making mistakes (Estella=mistake?). I mean, if you don´t move on, if you don´t risk, you don´t win. He goes away from an easy life to a complicated -tempting- one. He wants to try and has illusion. And honestly, to have illusion is the best thing that could happen to someone, because we spend more time having illusion than being happy.

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Carmen, we don´t know the subject for our next essay. You will tell us ...

I´m thinking about Joe now. Such an honourable man. There is not enough money in the world to compensate him for the loss of Pip´s services, because this is not a question of money for Joe. However illiterate he is, he has principles. I like him.

About Pip, as Maria says he has illusion, but in my opinion, now that he knows that “that” person is the person from whom he derives his expectations, he should be happier than he really is. It is true that you never know what is round the corner, but nevertheless, at this point in his life where he has achieved his dream he should be more excited.

Anónimo dijo...

ups sorry delete plz [url=http://duhum.com].[/url]

Carmen dijo...

"all (what) THAT (It is a relative clause)has happened until now", Roberto! a very good post in spite of this mistake.
María has a point, Pip wants to move on and get better, what we despise in him is to see that he is willing to leave his friends behind because he sees that they do not, could not fit in this new world. This is indeed hard, but let´s admit that we have all dropped friends as our lives progress. You may say that we despised or wanted to drop them because we now found them low-profile, but....who hasn´t felt a little ashamed of going back home from Madrid to our village, town, etc. and felt that they were "different", to put it in a nice way?
Dickens puts into words, as Roberto has said, what we feel or perceive inside us but which we cannot express as clearly. This is why he touches the reader becasue we recognize what he describes. Pip feels that he is worthless of Joe, yet he is glad, relieved to keep him hidden away in his forge.
As to Estella and Biddy, Estella is a victim, she is being brought up to hurt, and to hurt men, to be cold-blooded, and cold-blooded she is, which is just another proof of how important it is to be educated as those taught, eventually, learn!!!!

Carmen dijo...

SORRY, I forgot to give you the title of your next composition.
"Describe in 300 words a parting" Read carefully the chapter where Pip parts from home.

Susana dijo...

Hi there! What a traveller group we are! I was in Bologna last week-end (nothing to do with Bologna declaration). I hardly recommend visiting this city, but what I want to share with you is my visit to “Palazzo dell'Archiginnasio”, the Palace where the faculties of the old University were gathered until Napoleon moved them to their present being location. It is said that Bologna University is the oldest university existing in Europe, as it was founded in 1088. I recognize that I have a romantic nature, but the visit has been really impressive. In the Palace’s court there are two stairs, one for the law students and the other for the art students, completely covered with coats of arms belonging to doctors of different subjects. The stairs lead to the first floor where the Magna Aula are. Art’s Aula Magna is the Anatomical Theatre, where first dissections of human or animal bodies took place in 14th and 16th centuries, (the table used is still there), during the Carnival time when some of the Church’s bans were lifted. Law’s Magna AuIa is now a University Library. Walking along the Palazzo, I felt really overwhelmed by centuries of culture and knowledge.

Coming back to our topic, I’ve just read chapter eighteen, and I think of it as one of the best until now. It is an essay about the human nature: the self-absorbed Mr. Wopsle, the arrogant Jaggers, the honourable Joe, the virtuous Biddy and the misgiving Pip.
I totally agree Jesus. It is Dickens that better gets that characters cannot be absolutely good or evil, but a conflicting mixture of feelings and behaviours.
Much can be said about this chapter (I’m sure you all will do) but I’d like to comment the last two paragraphs when Pip is alone in his room “feeling it very sorrowful that the first of his bright fortune should be the loneliest...”. I think that when a big change happens in our life, even hard desired, but which involves leaving our house or our family or our city, often we feel fear, and we feel loneliness. An unknown future stretches ahead of Pip, probably including his desire to be uncommon, but he must leave what he knows as certain, Joe friendship, and Biddy kindness.

Sorry Carmen, I’ve just read your last post. I agree Pip must leave his friends and the village for moving on, but I think that, alone in his room, at night, Pip feels mainly fear. Even not consciously, he perceives nobody in his new life (let’s say Stella, Ms. Havishams or Mr. Jaggers)as warm kind as Joe or Biddy.

Susana dijo...

Hi there! What a traveller group we are! I was in Bologna last week-end (nothing to do with Bologna declaration). I hardly recommend visiting this city, but what I want to share with you is my visit to “Palazzo dell'Archiginnasio”, the Palace where the faculties of the old University were gathered until Napoleon moved them to their present being location. It is said that Bologna University is the oldest university existing in Europe, as it was founded in 1088. I recognize that I have a romantic nature, but the visit has been really impressive. In the Palace’s court there are two stairs, one for the law students and the other for the art students, completely covered with coats of arms belonging to doctors of different subjects. The stairs lead to the first floor where the Magna Aula are. Art’s Aula Magna is the Anatomical Theatre, where first dissections of human or animal bodies took place in 14th and 16th centuries, (the table used is still there), during the Carnival time when some of the Church’s bans were lifted. Law’s Magna AuIa is now a University Library. Walking along the Palazzo, I felt really overwhelmed by centuries of culture and knowledge.

Coming back to our topic, I’ve just read chapter eighteen, and I think of it as one of the best until now. It is an essay about the human nature: the self-absorbed Mr. Wopsle, the arrogant Jaggers, the honourable Joe, the virtuous Biddy and the misgiving Pip.
I totally agree Jesus. It is Dickens that better gets that characters cannot be absolutely good or evil, but a conflicting mixture of feelings and behaviours.
Much can be said about this chapter (I’m sure you all will do) but I’d like to comment the last two paragraphs when Pip is alone in his room “feeling it very sorrowful that the first of his bright fortune should be the loneliest...”. I think that when a big change happens in our life, even hard desired, but which involves leaving our house or our family or our city, often we feel fear, and we feel loneliness. An unknown future stretches ahead of Pip, probably including his desire to be uncommon, but he must leave what he knows as certain, Joe friendship, and Biddy kindness.

Sorry Carmen, I’ve just read your last post. I agree Pip must leave his friends and the village for moving on, but I think that, alone in his room, at night, Pip feels mainly fear. Even not consciously, he perceives nobody in his new life (let’s say Stella, Ms. Havishams or Mr. Jaggers)as warm kind as Joe or Biddy.

Carmen dijo...

a very good description of the Palazzo, thanks for shering it with us. I was in Bologna during Xmas and I have to say I liked it, in spite of not having had time to actually go inside any buildings, it was lunch time.
Susan, I agree with you that loneliness and ensuing fear is what human beings feel before a new stage in their lives...it is how I felt walking down the Church aisle towards...the altar on my marriage day. This just proves that relationships and relating with others, family friends, etc. is a veil hiding our loneliness. All the important phases of our lives are experienced as individuals, however much surrounded we are with friends. Some people object to this point of view, but think, the actual birth, death, etc. is a "lonely" experience, lived from outside to inside if you see what I mean, suffering, happiness, creativity, really, all, is an individual experience of feeling.
Pip wants to go, to leave, to ...forget his past, however he is lonely because he perceives this loneliness for the first time, he is aware of it, in a hazy sort of way...it´s awful, really, we are for ever in pursuit of friends, of company, unaware that we are lonely all the time. Learn to fill up this loneliness, but don´t avoid it...it´s there...waiting...

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Susana, thank you for explaining about Bologna to us, it is very interesting. I have never been to Bologna.

I´m thinking about Carmen´s comment and about Pip´s loneliness. I agree and please, let me know if I don´t have a/the point with my opinion. Look at Pip´s words: “I saw light wreaths from Joe´s pipe floating there, and I fancied it was like a blessing form Joe not to .... but pervading the air we shared together”. All those important moments of our lives (when Carmen was walking down the Church aisle towards...the altar on her marriage day –I like the example very much- when Pip is in his bedroom just before he parts from home, it reminds me the night before I left my parents´s home looking for my independence when I was nineteen years old) need a blessing (from Joe, from our father, from our mather, from friends of ours, from God, from OURSELVES) and this is the “permission” we are looking for at that moment, and once we get the “passport” we feel relieved and in my opinion, the state of loneliness changes immediately.

Carmen dijo...

I totally agree with you, Mar, it hadn´t struck me that that permisssion was important, but it is because it relieves our minds, as we are generally sorry, happy as we may be of our future perspectives, to leave those who have accompanied us up to that moment.
Parting is always a sad business, because we know that returning as we were would be impossible, that we are in fact new people, with new experience and new lives, no, you can never recover what you´ve lost once you´ve moved on...And this feeling of lonelines rises from this blurred knowledge that going back to what we were will be absolutely impossible.

Susana dijo...

Carmen, I agree that deepest experiences and most important decisions in our life, we deal with them alone, and becoming aware of it is part of becoming mature. I don’t think at any age we get rid of fear or apprehension in these situations, but experience teaches us how to face them up better. I remember now our talking in class about being a spirit, perhaps those who are a spirit are those who tackle their fears and move on.
Mar, thanks your read more carefully. I haven’t notice this part in the paragraph about blessing. I think blessing from family or friends is really comforting when we face important decisions. Even they be our decisions and they be our consequences, having support of those we trust makes the task simpler.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

The last night at home for Pip, was very sorrowful. Dickens is a master in creating that atmosphere of intensity, especially in those moments that turn out to be turning points in the plot. He uses the night for the intensity of contrast between darkness and light to remark Pip`s thoughts surrounding his mind. Remember the night with the convicts, that night when a man could die due to the inmense cold. Remember as well, the night before his departure to Mrs Havisham´s place for the first time, with the stars twinlking in the dark sky, and now the sparks of Joe´s pipe floating in the air accompany him in his lonelyness.

I understand his feeling, because when you settle a target, and you get it there is sometimes a sense of emptyness deep down. I think it happened to me when I became a civil servant -after struggling for four years-. People was shocked I was not as happy as I was supposed to be. I was so focused that at the end, I did not know what to expect. What was next? In Pip´s case I think it is much worse, because he may be alone in his brand new life as a gentelman.

Roberto dijo...

What a mistake! I certainly should be more careful with my writing. Unpardonable.

The last few comments are really good and most of the topics and personal thoughts I wanted to point out have been already mentioned. Congratulations. I can hardly add anything else but my personal perception of those unforgettable two chapters.

There was a moment in my life when I suddenly realized that my parents’ protection, a safe and comfortable place to live in, continuous support and true love were not enough. I needed to set off for the undiscovered country, the Promised Land which, despite giving but pain, would probably let me taste that rare, exotic fruit that the world out there is. Thus, my own world became insufferable, dull and exasperating. Even my family seemed to be different to me, unable to understand what I felt and only being an impediment that prevented me from moving on. However, when the time to part arrived at length, and with it sorrow and melancholy, I saw what my family and life really meant to me. I kept thinking “why do I wish to leave this shelter and prefer to go out and face a tempest beyond which I do not know if there the eternal paradise really exists?” Then, only isolation became my ally (or should say enemy?) and my family being on one side and my dreams on the other, I eventually felt as though I fell into the whirlpool in between. It is afterwards, when my life until then had been left behind, that I saw and valued what I had and how important those who loved me are to me. I was also sensible that they suffered too and that it was hard for them to say goodbye as well. “There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it”.

As for Biddy, I will say at present that we men are so thick sometimes that we cannot see the perfect woman even though she is literally in front of us. Intelligent, sincere, mature but most of all, in love with Pip for what he really is, this character is the sort of woman I like.

Joe has improved a lot too, do not you think? In the beginning I did pity him, as a man, but know I respect him.

JAVIER MARTINEZ dijo...

I agree with all of you. In addition, I daresay that is normal the Pip´s feelings about his parting. In life, you have to take decissions yourself. And your family, friends, etc, can not tell you what to do. You must decide what to do if you want to grow in personality. The successes or mistakes that you have in the life will be good for learning.

María dijo...

Parting, I am afraid I am as good at parting as Pip is -good or bad, selfish or brave, unconscious or ambitious-. Probably all together at the same time. The fact is that when I part rarely do I want to come back. Maybe because I´ve been lucky and what I have found is much better -more interesting- than what I knew before. Am I despising my past or my origin? I think I am somehow, though on the other hand I am proud of where I come from. Does anyone have the explanation?
When Pip decides to get out, to change his life, to find his life..., doesn´t Pip have the spirit of an adventurer? For Biddy, to be at ease and comfortable is enough; Pip looks for another kind of happiness. He can win or lose but at least he is trying, following his illusion. I respect and admire him as far as this is concerned.

María dijo...

I had not read every comment since the last time I wrote! There are lots of them! Loneliness, what a issue! The sooner you enjoy it, the better. The less you need people, the less you will be dissappointed. Loneliness fits very well with independency. As we are meant to be alone, aren´t we?
However, it is very difficult to be happy if you cannot tell anyone about your happiness!! Or whatever! It is good to gain experiences, but it is much better to talk about them!
Roberto, you are getting better all the time as far as quoting is concerned. Well done! By the way, the "rare, exotic fruit" that you say the world out there is, wasn´t it the ignorance; if you touch it, bloom´s gone?

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

I read the last chapter of the first part, just the one before Pip´s departing to London. It seems to me that Pip´s new status, is changing him somehow. It is funny whe he discovers the power of saying "I have come into a handsome property".

Even his way of speaking seems to be different, especially when he argues with Biddy (what a pity, poor lovely girl!). If you listen to the non-accelerated audiobook in the DVD which Manolo gave us (it is absolutlely recomendable due to the astonishing ability of imitating female old voices like Mrs. Havisham´s), you will realize that even the tone of the reader, is more stiff and proud when he reads Pip´s dialogues.

María, I think loneliness is a good chance to think of one´s own life, to know you deep down,... but I had never consider it as a way of avoiding dissapointments. It does sound really hard...

And about happiness, I like the idea that it is not an arrival station, but a way of travelling.

María dijo...

I would like to have that audiobook. But I can see that it is true what you say about Pip´s voice changing. His tone is now another one, as he believes himself to be different -better and uncommon- from what he was before, I mean, in the sense that he believes himself to deserve that "handsome property" and to go far away from that dreary town. His prospect of change and development provides him with a sort of pride. Definitely, poor Biddy. Good girls are meant to suffer... At first... At the end, life is fair... I hope so!
I have to reread the two first chapters of the second part, which I read in the train where I found them quite difficult...
As to the loneliness as a way of avoiding dissapointments, it does sound hard. Life is hard! But I think it is true. We usually are dissapointed because people are not as we would wish them to be. They can hurt us, once and again, even when it is not their intention. However, if you very much enjoy your loneliness to the extent of not needing "desperately" the others, you get a point in which you are not dissapointed anymore, because "it doesn´t really matter". Loneliness is, somehow, a way of self-protecting, and also a means to get the real and full independency, individuality and maturity.

Susana dijo...

Reading chapter nineteen, Pip’s attitude towards Biddy has attracted my attention. Because he is a boy and Joe is his dearest fellow, it’s understandable his desire to move him into a higher position, even his asking Biddy to improve Joe’s manners, for his being more comfortable in the new sphere where Pip expects both to move. But, why doesn’t he understand Biddy’s reasoning? Of course he is really proud of being brought up as a gentleman, and for him, it’s difficult to understand that Joe could intentionally not want a future like his, but I think there is something more, because Biddy’s reasons make him angry.

In chapter seventeen Pip told Biddy that he regretted not be able to be happy with his common life in the forge, eventually going partner with Joe and keeping company with her. Now Biddy tells him that Joe is perfectly happy, even proud in that type of life, and Pip feels deeply hurt. I think that Pip accepts better Joe as a poor good illiterate fellow, than as a proud, skilful, self-respecting man. In an unconscious way Pip feels that his good fortune and his great expectations are not enough valued by Joe and Biddy, for those who he considered common and in that sense inferior to him. Pip is becoming quite arrogant.

Pip attitude has made me think how easier in our society people sympathize with someone’s misfortune than are happy about someone’s success.

Susana dijo...

Sorry, more easily...

MAR (5ºA) dijo...

Maria, as you would like to have the audio book, I will bring a copy for you. I will give you the DVD on Saturday.

Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

Susana, I agree with you about Pip´s rising arrogance. Furthermore it comes with a new sympathy from the rest of the society...money makes the world go round!

María dijo...

Thanks Mar! It is very kind of you! I am looking forward to seeing you in that sophisticated scenario...
I agree with Susana as far as Pip´s arrogance is concerned. However, I don´t think he preferred Joe being ignorant. I believe he is sincere when wanting Joe to be "improved", because we want our beloved to be different and better..., which of course makes us arrogant and awful.

Roberto dijo...

Well, I do not completely agree with you according to Pip’s feelings and attitude towards both Biddy and Joe. Pip has obviously changed and suddenly is sensible that he cannot stay by Joe and Biddy’s side any more. What does this mean? That he is ashamed of his own selfishness and cannot help feeling upset because he knows that despite adoring them, he is actually rejecting and hurting the ones who really care for him. Thus, he tries to focus only on which he considers to be right, so to say, his own perception of things and we all know that when you do not want to be aware of something, you will not. Don’t you think that Dickens explains perfectly well not only Pips’ perception but also, indirectly though, Biddy and Joe’s too? And that is marvellous, isn’t it?

Maria, I can see what you mean and I believe there is nothing wrong in not being ashamed of your own feelings of joy before the perspective of a new life which once achieved is more pleasant to you than the one you used to have. That does not necessarily mean that you do not love those you left behind. We have to move on, trying to do which we believe will make us complete. However, in my case it is different. I cannot help missing them, thinking that I am renouncing to a part of my life, which until then had given me satisfaction and real affection, to pursue my dreams. I also have a sense of selfishness because it is as though I was unjust to those who did so many things for me in some way or the other.

Roberto dijo...

Well, I do not completely agree with you according to Pip’s feelings and attitude towards both Biddy and Joe. Pip has obviously changed and suddenly is sensible that he cannot stay by Joe and Biddy’s side any more. What does this mean? That he is ashamed of his own selfishness and cannot help feeling upset because he knows that despite adoring them, he is actually rejecting and hurting the ones who really care for him. Thus, he tries to focus only on which he considers to be right, so to say, his own perception of things and we all know that when you do not want to be aware of something, you will not. Don’t you think that Dickens explains perfectly well not only Pips’ perception but also, indirectly though, Biddy and Joe’s too? And that is marvellous, isn’t it?

Maria, I can see what you mean and I believe there is nothing wrong in not being ashamed of your own feelings of joy before the perspective of a new life which once achieved is more pleasant to you than the one you used to have. That does not necessarily mean that you do not love those you left behind. We have to move on, trying to do which we believe will make us complete. However, in my case it is different. I cannot help missing them, thinking that I am renouncing to a part of my life, which until then had given me satisfaction and real affection, to pursue my dreams. I also have a sense of selfishness because it is as though I was unjust to those who did so many things for me in some way or the other.

MAR dijo...

Maria you won't find sophistication ... you will find "me".

Susana talks about Pip's arrogance. I also think that we can talk about Pip's pride. As Biddy says there are many kinds of pride, and she shows us a new face of Joe (Joe is proud ....) In my opinion, Joe's pride has positive connotations, but nevertheless, we are knowing now a new Pip, in my opinion his pride doesn't allow him to see Biddy's point of view. He also speaks to Biddy in a different tone of voice (as Jesus says). I believe that Pip is growing up quickly and that he hasn't developed his personality yet and we are witnessing now a new Pip who sometimes looks back to his family and friends and expresses himself with words like: "I had become more and more appreciative of the society of Joe and Biddy"

María dijo...

Oh Mar, if we are in a sophisticated place we become into sophisticated people too! Or we should! See you tomorrow!!!
As to Pip´s change and after rereading the sentence you wrote, could we talk about Pip being classist? Or is it "too much"?
Just a little thing: take advantage of English lessons, make the most of it, you never know where you will finish, where life drives you... Have the best of the weekends!

Carmen dijo...

Roberto, your personal description of your departure is the best you have ever written!!! Well done, very well described and expressed, has feeling, captures the reader. 10

CCarmen dijo...

María, you do not despise anything or anyone, what you want to do is hunt your lion...you want to live the adventure of live...you want to experience and learn, and to observe, I suspect you are good at that....

Carmen dijo...

Roberto and María, arent we getting good at quoting??? When you come back let´s see if you make it fashionable and we start quoting in this country!! Álvaro pombo is fond of that, isn´t he? he quotes in all his novels.

carmen dijo...

Jesús i also like the idea of happiness/travelling.
I understand what María means when she says that loneliness prevents disappointment, when you don´t mix, you don´t expect, wait for anything from anybody...

Carmen dijo...

Jesús and maría have mentioned that Pip seems to ahve a new strength, even in his voice, derived from his money, a new pride. That is how the upper class moves out and about, they have money, they have education, they are...superior..it´s very easy and it works with other things than money. The tall despise the short (in Santander, where men are tall, short men are aften described as "un sapo espachurrado"!!)the beauty looks scornfully down on her less fortunate friends, and the nimble laugh at the clumsy afforts of the stiff...an old story.

Carmen dijo...

Roberto, I think that you are expressing yourself mor and more precisely everytime! Now Dickens is an absolute master in presentation and analysis of character, I do think Pip is honestly sorry to leave joe and the Forge. He breaks out in tears once he ahs left. now his desire for parting is so great that stay he can´t. Of course you feel terrible, and unjust to leave those under whose loving care you´ve been happily living....if you are that sort. I regretted having left my family when I was at Woldingham...and when I was at university....and when i started working....and when I realized that I was working in madrid...I think I stopped having this feelling when i got married!!! as you see with me it was a long affair. It is breaking the umbilical cord, and, quite honestly, it took me too long!! I must have been very very immature!!! Well, seriously, we need to move on if that is what one wants; another person may want to stay and live at home with Papa and mummy forever, and why not? But if you want to live a live with other experience, new situations, you´ll leave, Pip, does, Jane Eyre did, Roberto has done it and so has maría, and me, and....Don´t regret it too much, Roberto, you can always come back, make the most of your time now as it will fly and before you are aware you will be back for the Summer and one year gone!!! Currently it is very easy to be in contact..on line, well, some of us know this, don´t we? moreover, think that our parents also left their homes...

Carmen dijo...

Mar I envy you, this weekend at Windsor, I wouldn´t mind being a guest at Windsor castle at all, would you????? Have a cream tea together, you and María at a hotel (it is bound to be there, things don´t change in England), looking onto the river...and talk quietly and munch your scones in a sophisticated English way....
Biddy, in my opinion she is quiet person, she has had little in life but has the fortune of a nice, positive character and some brains, so, thoguh little educated she has managed to work in different areas, even helping a very strange "teacher" with her deficient lessons. Now she is in charge of an invalid and Joe and she does it beautifully. What do people like Biddy with her good-nature do? live and worry about small things. She embodies the simplicity of life and the happiness that "doing what is correct" brings, Rarely do people like Biddy want to move on, and quite honestly, who, who is satisfied with his life does?

Anónimo dijo...

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Carmen dijo...

I said we could post some comments on the blog about the first two chpaters and here goes mine: very funny the opinion that it susceptible of being considered treason to think that the britons are not the best!!
I´ve liked the description of Mr. Jagger´s premises,and that of the desperation of the people waiting for the lawyer to do something for their "bills", for their particular suits. The length the law takes, the lack of consideration towards those who are involved in the trails is amazing...and still the same in our present time...

Roberto dijo...

Before discussing your last comments Carmen,

Thank you, honestly, you really know how to encourage us and I believe many of your currents students are already sensible of your talent to teach English. If I can write like that, it is mainly because of your teaching. Believe me when I say that, after nearly a whole life dedicated to study and to attend lectures, more than 90% of my motivation, improvement and achievement of proper knowledge are based on how good the teaching is. This is a fact! Thus, when you find a very good professor, the effort required to study (and therefore learning) is not a burden any more. On the other hand, we all know that there is something else apart from your command of the language which makes her classes unique: yourself.

Roberto dijo...

Sorry, I meant "your" classes unique:

オテモヤン dijo...

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Jesús Fernández de Vera dijo...

We can see what Carmen said about how long it takes that law be aplied correctly. It used to happen in Spain long time ago,... and it happens nowadays as well. There is a harmful gipsy curse in spanish that you could say to your worst enemy:

"Oh that you be involved in trials,... and you win them!"
("¡Tengas pleitos, y los ganes!"), because there is nothing worse than winning a trail and being deprived of the fair compensation due to the slowness of the process.

Carmen dijo...

Well Roberto thanks, you make me blush.....

Jesús, a very well-written and expressed last sentence

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