Can you imagine how fucking wild ladies must have gone for the rejection in pride and prejudice right after it was first published. This guy’s making ten thousand a year and her family is expecting her to find accommodation for herself sooner rather than later and STILL Lizzie is like “no. No. True love only. And also while I’ve got you here please accept my invitation to fuck off.” I would’ve lost my damn gourd, I would’ve gone bonkers. And group chats didn’t exist so you’d just have to hope your friends were as far into the book as you so you could meet at the village green to throw a fucking riot
The true love interpretation of Pride and Prejudice always seems slightly off to me – it’s line Davies gave Elizabeth in the 1990s adaptation, but I don’t think she ever says it in the book.
What she does say, very clearly, is that her father is a terrible husband for “exposing his wife to the contempt of her own children” which is something Elizabeth can not help noticing, however much she may love her father.
It seems to me that what she really wants in a marriage is respect, chiefly because she has seen how poisonous a marriage without respect can become.
Austen is absolutely scathing on the impact of negligent parents in her other novels, and I think Elizabeth’s position on marriage is more of the same.