by Charles Dickens
Great Expectations Chapter 29 Quotes
How we cite the quotes:
She had adopted Estella, she had as good as adopted me, and it could not fail to be her intention to bring us together. She reserved it for me to restore the desolate house, admit the sunshine into the dark rooms, set the clocks a going and the cold hearths a blazing, tear down the cobwebs, destroy the vermin—in short, do all the shining deeds of the young Knight of romance, and marry the Princess. (29.2)
Pip's dreams seem to be made of images, actions, and theatrical elements rather than emotions or substantive encounters. Well, that makes sense—they're dreams. Instead of imagining a real moment of happiness and understanding with Estella, Pip imagines dramatically and magically curing Satis House. It's all very Beauty and the Beast, minus the singing candelabra. (We wish there were a singing candelabra.)
The lady whom I had never seen before, lifted up her eyes and looked archly at me, and then I saw that the eyes were Estella's eyes. But she was so much changed, was so much more beautiful, so much more womanly, in all things winning admiration had made such wonderful advance, that I seemed to have made none. I fancied, as I looked at her, that I slipped hopelessly back into the coarse and common boy again. O the sense of distance and disparity that came upon me, and the inaccessibility that came about her! (29.38)
Is it just us, or does Pip seem a lot more interested in thinking about the distance between himself and his dream than about the dream—i.e., Estella—itself? We get the sense that he wouldn't even know what to do with her if he got her.
The unqualified truth is, that when I loved Estella with the love of a man, I loved her simply because I found her irresistible. Once for all; I knew to my sorrow, often and often, if not always, that I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be. Once for all; I loved her nonetheless because I knew it, and it had no more influence in restraining me, than if I had devoutly believed her to be human perfection. (29.2)
Hm. Is Pip maybe just in lust with Estella? He sees her faults, but she's still impossible to resist—almost like she's put a spell on him. That doesn't sound like a love we want to be part of.