THE DISTRIBUTION AND FREQUENCY OF THE TERMS “PRIDE” AND “PREJUDICE” IN JANE AUSTEN’S PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
Tanja Dromnes, Sandra Lee Kleppe, Kenneth Mikalsen, and Sigrid Solhaug
In this article we examine the title terms of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (1813) with particular attention to their distribution and frequency in the text. Our method is to connect the statistical material gathered on frequency and distribution to a narratological analysis of the terms, with special emphasis on whether they occur within the focalization of the external narrator, or that of character-focalizers. In order to approach this task, we have availed ourselves of the narratological theories of Mieke Bal. We conclude that there is a differentiation among types of focalization in the novel that enhances the thematic structure of match-making. Although Jane Austen wrote and published her major works two centuries ago, they continue to fascinate literary scholars and general readers alike. In this article we will examine the title terms of Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (1813) with particular attention to their distribution and frequency in the text. The purpose of this analysis is to uncover to what extent the title terms illustrate the central conflicts of the novel; by doing this we hope to contribute something new to the reading of the novel. Former critics, such as Robert C. Fox, warn the reader against being “misled by investing the title with more significance than is warranted” (1962, 185). Everett Zimmerman, on the other hand, argues that “the qualities of pride and prejudice have been interpreted so narrowly that the full significance of the title has been obscured” (1986, 64), and continues by asking “should it not, in the context of the novel, acquire richer and more pertinent meanings than the merely literal ones that critics ordinarily suggest?” (65). Jane Austen did not choose her title arbitrarily, but more importantly we argue that she employed her...