October 1

Young Havisham’s name was Arthur. Compeyson is the man who professed to be Miss Havisham’s lover.

There have been many revelations in this evening’s reading, especially in chapter 42.  Discuss these new developments and how they might alter our understanding of some of the major themes of the novel, as we have discussed them so far.  Some themes to consider are:

  • money
  • appearance v. reality
  • guilt and shame
  • love
  • nature v. nurture

As always, be sure to include many text-based details to support your opinions and follow all the rules of standard written English.   In addition, remember to respond to at least one other comment in this thread.

GE blog #14

Copyright © 2018. All rights reserved.

Posted October 1, 2018 by equinson in category Great Expectations

40 thoughts on “Young Havisham’s name was Arthur. Compeyson is the man who professed to be Miss Havisham’s lover.

  1. Myles Ng

    These chapters support the theme of appearance v. reality. In these chapters we learn about the history of Pip’s convict, Abel Magwitch and Compeyson the man who broke Ms. Havisham’s heart. Abel Magwitch was born and orphan, he had to steal to survive and was in and out of prisons him whole life. I believe this is why Magwitch wanted to give so much to Pip. They were both orphans and he had had a bad life, but he wants Pip to have a good one. Magwitch meets with a man named Compeyson, who had an accomplice by the name of Arthur, who Pip and Herbert know to be one of Ms. Havisham’s relatives. Magwith says that Compeyson acted like a gentleman. Even though on the inside he was corrupt and evil. This shows the theme of appearance v. reality. Compeyson appears to be one thing but he is really the exact opposite. When Magwitch and Compeyson are busted and are ijn court the court believe Compeyson is a gentleman and deserves a second chance. Meanwhile Magwitch who looks more brutish and unkempt is seen as a criminal and is locked away. Compeyson uses his gentleman like appearance to scam and con people. He conned Ms. Havisham by “marrying her” and when her father died Compeyson took the inheritance and abandoned Ms. Havisham at her wedding. I believ this is why Ms. Havisham has trained Estella to break hearts. She is trying to get revenge/redemption for what happended to her on her wedding day.
    Pip after hearing all this is not so grateful for what Magwitch has done for him. He speaks of breaking of from the convict and getting him out of his life completely. He wants to stop donations from the convict due to fear.

  2. Hannah Pitkofsky

    In chapters 40-42, a motif reappears that has been slowly becoming more relevant as the story progresses. The motif is appearance v. reality. This motif begins, in my opinion, all the way back at the beginning of part 2 of the novel, where Pip goes to London to become a gentleman, hiding his true self (the son of Joe Gargery, the blacksmith) from everyone he encounters in London. In more recent chapters, we meet Pip’s convict again, who has been hiding a lot from Pip himself, including his part in Pip becoming a gentleman, but he also hid his name from Pip. In chapter 40, we learn that Pip’s convict’s name is Abel Magwitch, but he doesn’t want Pip’s servants/people working for him to find out who HE really is (an escaped convict), so Pip “names” him Uncle Provis, which was actually an alias that Abel came up with on the boat ride to England. Once Herbert returns home and Abel leaves, the two boys come up with a secret plan that they do not tell Abel about, and it APPEARS that nothing suspicious is going on, but in REALITY, something is going on. Abel has also been hiding the story of his past and why he became a convict in the first place. He eventually tells Pip and Herbert his story, so the secret has been revealed, except for one detail about his past lover, who he doesn’t mention in his childhood retelling. One of the criminals who Abel looked up to, Compeyson, was later discovered as the man who stood up Miss Havisham on her wedding day, which no one expected to be the case. Overall, this motif is an important one to the story, and it may put some of the characters in unpleasant situations if anyone finds out.

    1. mikaylaf

      I agree with the fact that the theme appearance v. reality appears back in the beginning of part two. I also think it appears when Pip first sees London, and he realizes it isn’t all that great, like he thought it was.

  3. Emma Garbowitz

    One theme that I thought was very important to observe in chapter 42 was your appearance verses reality. In this chapter, Pip is learning all about the convict and what he did throughout his life to become a convict. However, once he begins sharing his story, I think he is just a very misjudged character. This is because at first it seems as though he was just stealing food as a way for him to eat so he doesn’t starve. Obviously this wasn’t the right thing to do, but it wasn’t as If the convict was murdering, or hurting other people. The only reason why the convict did this was because he had zero money to buy food with in the first place. The text states, “They always went on agen me about the Devil. But what the Devil was I to do? I must put something into my stomach, mustn’t I?” This shows how the convict was just trying to provide for himself enough so that he wouldn’t die from starvation.
    I think the convict is just misunderstood and Pip doesn’t realize the hardships he went through as a child, and a young man. I think Pip is being kind of hasty about his judgment towards the convict based on the first time that they met (when the convict was asking for food). Now, he is just trying to get rid of him even after all the convict has done. The convict is just so proud of Pip being a gentleman and he did everything in his power to make Pip’s life great, even if that meant that his life would be poor. The text states, ” I know nothing of his life. It has almost made me mad to sit here of a night and see him before me, so bound up with my fortunes and misfortunes, and yet so unknown to me, except as the miserable wretch who terrified me two days in my childhood!”This shows how Pip is so quick to judge the Convict even after what the convict did for him.
    In the future, I think Pip will begin to appreciate all that was done for him by the convict. The convict did all he could to allow Pip to become a gentleman, which is all Pip wanted in his life. Pip definitely misjudged him and the convict should be able to stay with him. Therefore, a very important lesson was learned throughout the last three chapters I read.

    1. Emily

      I agree, the convict is misunderstood and now that Pip knows the truth he will probably appreciate the sacrifices that have been made for him.

    2. Laila Sayegh

      I agree that Pip has poor judgment when it comes to the convict and does not realize all of the things he had gone through.

  4. Emily

    Chapter 42 was a very important chapter that greatly aided in the development of the theme, appearance vr. reality. We finally learn the convicts motives and what happened in his past. At one point when the convict is telling Pip and Herbert the story of his past, he says to them, “”I first become aware of myself, down in Essex, a thieving turnips for my living. Summun had run away from me—a man—a tinker—and he’d took the fire with him, and left me wery cold.” The very first time that Provis was sent to prison was because he was found to have stolen turnips. At first glance, it seems that he is a thief and he deserves to be punished, but the reality is that he only stole because he was a starving orphan and if he did not he would have died. Provis’s whole life people have been looking down at him because he is just a dirty criminal. When he was sent to jail, the guards said that, “This (Provis) is a terrible hardened one… May be said to live in jails, this boy” Provis was not trying to be malicious, only trying to survive. Society thinks that he is the worst part of society, the part that you be disgusted by. In contrast, Provis beleives that he is the way that he is because of society and how they treated him when he was a child begging for food.

    I predict that the theme of guilt will be very prominent in the following chapters as a result of the way Pip treats the convict. The convict is actually similar to Pip in some ways, but Pip still acts like he is above him. Like Pip, the convict is an orphan with no actual family. When the convict discovered that Pip was just a poor young boy with no parents, he felt bad for him. Although the convict has a hard exterior and he has done a lot of bad things, I think that their is a good heart underneath. The convict is actually not the criminal that he was portrayed as in the beginning and this will probably revolutionize how people treat him.

    1. angelicac1

      I also believe that the convict has a good heart. He is a misunderstood character and hopefully Pip soon realizes that he has a good life.

  5. Laila Sayegh

    In chapter 42 of Great Expectations, we see a major theme of Appearance VS Reality regarding the convict. In this chapter, the convict tells Herbert and Pip about he came to be who he is and his past.
    In this chapter, I learned that people are very quick to judge someone based on their appearance. One of the earliest memories that the convict, now known as Magwitch, was when he stole turnips. He was a young boy and an orphan, just like Pip! He needed food to live. Just because he seemed to be a “dirty criminal” they sent him to jail right away. I feel like if Magwitch looked as though he was a gentleman, he would not face these types of punishments. I say this because we also learn of a man from Magwitch’s past named Compeyson. He was also a convict, scammer, and criminal. It did not seem that way though. He would disguise himself to look like an uncommon gentleman. He would never receive the type of sentences that Magwitch had. It is also revealed that Miss Havisham’s mystery “runaway groom” was Compeyson! Hearing the full story of what had happened to Miss Havisham does, in fact, make me sympathize with her. Miss Havisham did not just lose a husband, she was scammed by him.
    To my surprise, Pip didn’t seem to show very much empathy towards the convict. This is so odd because not only was Pip an orphan just as he was, but Pip was able to see his living conditions. The convict was never trying to hurt anyone, all he wanted to do was survive. I really hope Pip is able to accept the convict and instead of feeling repulsive towards him, feel grateful.
    One thing I really enjoyed watching in these chapters was all of the aspects of Pip’s life coming together. In this book, I have noticed three continuing storylines: The convict, Miss Havisham and Estella, and Joe and Biddy. As of now, the convict and Miss Havisham and Estella had no connections to each other but as we continue to read we do learn about how the two relate to one another. I found it cool how all of the storylines were tied together and as this happened, many of the themes of the novel were more clear.

  6. jaclynl

    In “Great Expectations,” there is a strong theme of appearance vs. reality in these chapters. This is seen especially in chapter 42 when Pip learns all about the convict and his past. Turns out, this convict has a name and it is Magwitch. Magwitch was born an orphan and had been through several different families. The first time he was ever sent to jail, it was because he had stolen turnips. He was so hungry when he was younger that he ended up taking them not because he was trying to be malicious, but because it was his only choice. This backstory is something that you probably would not think of when you see a convict. Although he did steal, he was very hungry and had to do so in order to survive, proving that maybe Magwitch isn’t such a bad person just because he is a convict. If Magwitch had not stolen these turnips, he would not have been better off because he could have starved to death. Now that Pip knows this information, he may start to rethink his opinion on the convict. Appearance vs. reality was used here to show a theme that not everything is what it seems. Just because someone has gotten into trouble in the past does not mean that they are bad as a whole.

    1. Zoe

      I agree that Magwitch doesn’t mean to be malicious, but just needed to survive. Do you think this might change the way Pip feels about having Magwitch fund him? I hope that Pip realizes that the social classes don’t matter and that you should treat everybody equally. Pip should be happy because he is very fortunate to obtain such a helpful friend.

  7. mikaylaf

    In chapters 40-42 the theme of nature versus nurture is further developed. Previously in the novel, we’ve seen examples of nature versus nurture when Estella and Miss Havisham have an argument. This goes to show that although Estella lived with Miss Havisham all her life and was like a daughter to her (nurture), she still had pieces of herself, of what she was born with (nature). I think this theme shows in chapters 40-42 in the way Pip acts towards the convict, who we now know as Abel Magwitch. In spite of all the generosity Magwitch has shown to Pip in giving him a gentleman’s fortune, Pip still wants him out of his house and out of his life. I believe the reason for Pip’s coldness is the fact that even though he has fully redeemed himself, Magwitch is still considered a criminal. Pip was taught from a young boy not to talk to criminals or bad people, like we all are. This is an example of how Mrs. Joe and Joe nurtured Pip as a child. Still, it is human nature to shy away from people you are not immediately charmed by. Now that Pip is his own person, these lessons have still stayed with him, and he refuses to give up his ways. I found it interesting that even Herbert, who is the kindest person you will ever meet, still shows dislike towards Magwitch. I genuinely feel sorry for Magwitch. What did he do to deserve this horrible treatment? Nothing! He was merely looking out for the boy who helped him many years ago. However Pip and Herbert refuse to see past the criminal part of Magwitch and into the kind-hearted man he really is. The text states, “Every hour so increased my abhorrence of him…” (page 339)

    Furthermore, the theme of guilt goes along with how Pip feels about Magwitch. As much as Pip despises the man, he cannot ignore all the wonderful things he’s done for Pip. Pip thinks this has indebted him towards the man, which makes him rethink his decision of forcing Magwitch out of his life completely. Pip says, “‘Then,’ said I, ‘after all, stopping short here, never taking another penny from him, think what I owe him already! Then again: I am heavily in debt – very heavily for me, who have now no expectations – and I have been bred to no calling, and I am fit for nothing.’” (page 342) I predict the feeling of guilt will lead Pip to ‘entertain’ Magwitch, and to not give up on him by letting him out of his life. As much as Pip wants Magwitch gone, he is soon going to see that Magwitch isn’t all that bad, and just wants the best for him.

    1. Casey

      I agree Pip is having a lot of conflict about what to do about Magwitch. It’s almost as if he doesn’t want to accept that the reason he was able to become a gentleman was all because of a random criminal.

  8. Casey

    In the chapters I read tonight, the motif, appearance versus reality, is brought to light. we find out more about the convict and his childhood and backstory. His real name is Abel Magwitch. He explains that he was always poor and was always committing crimes just to keep himself alive. He says “I first become aware of myself, down in Essex, a thieving turnips for my living.” His earliest crime was when he was caught stealing turnips to eat since he was an orphan with no one to provide him with any food. The convict felt the need to help Pip because he related to him. They were both orphans who were poor. The convict had it a little bit worse but nonetheless, he still felt bad. That’s why he made sure that Pip would never have to go through what he did as a child.

    The convict also reveals that he was sent to jail after himself and another criminal named Compeyson were caught stealing money from an unnamed woman. Magwitch explains that he doesn’t want anyone to know his identity because people are still looking for him, which is why he leaves. Pip decides that he won’t take any more money from the convict. Once the convict was gone, Pip receives a note explaining that the unnamed woman was actually Miss Havisham. Compeyson tricked her into thinking that he was a gentleman and convinced her to marry him. After Miss Havisham’s father died, Compeyson took all the money from him and never showed up at the wedding. This is what caused Miss Havisham to stop all of her clocks and stay in a time before she was heartbroken. This is also why she is training Estella to break hearts, as revenge. Pip is starting to realize that not everyone is who they say they are. The next chapters will definitely show that true identity of some of the characters in the novel so far.

  9. Sophie

    In chapters 40-42, the biggest theme that showed up is appearance vs reality. Appearance vs reality was not only a problem back then, but still occurs today. It happens when people are quick to jumping to conclusions, and it reminds me of the quote, don’t judge a book by it’s cover. I personally am really against people associating others in a certain way based on their appearance. Although it is very natural for everybody to think anything they want in their minds, once they turn their inner emotions into actions, it is not okay. That’s what happened in chapter 42. The jury thought that one man looked more superior than the other, and made an unfair decision that impacted of both of their lives.
    The convict, (who now goes by Magwitch), has been into crimes all throughout his life. At a point in his past life, he was partnered with another criminal, named Compeyson. (Who we now know is the man who scammed Miss Havisham). Compeyson was a very greedy evil man on the inside, but looked very nice and put together on the outside. He definitely used his appearances to his advantage. When Magwitch and Compeyson were eventually put on the trial for money counterfeiting, the jury unexceptionably associated Compeyson’s nice appearances with “a better person”, and gave him only half the punishment! Magwitch, who had very distressed looks about him, was associated as a “a guilty criminal”, and was given full harsh jail time. This was extraordinarily unfair, because the fact that Magwitch was deep down inside such an amazing person, (hence his deeds for Pip), was treated so disrespectfully because he didn’t look all that nice. It almost sounds like segregation to me, the way people were being treated as a lower class because they look a certain way. Overall, appearance vs reality showed up a lot in chapters 40-42, and I predict will continue to affect the rest of the story.

  10. angelicac1

    Throughout chapters 40-42, specifically in chapter 42, the motif “appearance vs. reality” can be found. In chapter 42, learns information on the convict and his life. After reading about the convict’s story, my opinion on the convict changed. I formerly thought that the convict was an awful character, but I now believe that he’s just misunderstood. The convict has no choice but to commit crimes like stealing. The convict suffered with poverty and he didn’t have the money needed to buy necessities, such as food. Starving wasn’t an option for him so his solution was to steal food. He was aware that stealing was bad, but he had no choice.

    In my opinion, it’s awful that Pip is trying to get rid of the convict after everything that the convict did for him because of the deed Pip did for him as a little boy. The convict felt proud of Pip for becoming a gentleman and he did so much for him. He just wanted the best for him.

    1. Hannah M.

      I also feel bad for the convict and agree that he was misunderstood for a criminal! Pip shouldn’t get rid of the convict after all he has done for Pip! Good job Angelica!

      1. Emma Garbowitz

        I agree how at first, the reader thought that the convict is a bad, cruel person, but he is just misunderstood and nobody really understands him. I feel bad for the Convict and in a way, he deserves more than just being kicked out by Pip.

    2. trinityt

      I felt bad for the convict, too. After all that he went through, he still wants to make Pip into a gentleman to thank him for the good deed he did years ago.

  11. Hannah M.

    In chapters 40-42 we see a theme further develop. This theme is appearance vs. reality. The convict talks to Hebert and Pip about his past. The convict talks about how much he and his family struggled to survive and how they were treated. He says that he was once put into jail for stealing a few turnips because he was just so hungry! His life as a child was not very pleasant for him so that’s why he is who he is. Pip looks at the convict and sees a malicious, gloomy, needy person. The convict is actually a pretty hard working generous person. For example, he made Pip rich! People don’t see the good in the convict, they only remember hi for the bad things he did in the past. We learn that the convicts real name is Magwitch and we meet Compeyson, a scammer kind of like what people think the convict, Magwitch is.
    Now onto Miss Havishams runaway groom story. Turns out, Compeyson is Miss Havishams runaway groom. I feel awful for Miss Havisham because she was scammed by him AND left at the alter by him. This makes me realize I shouldn’t have been to quick to judge Miss Havisham, for she has been through a lot in the past.
    This theme is teaching us to never judge a book by its cover. Dickems teaches us this because it is a great and helpful life lesson and in reality, it’s whats on the inside(personality) that matters. Also, it portrays a message of not holding grudges/staying in the past(Pip shouldn’t focus on how the convict use to treat him, he should focus on the convict new personality towards Pip and others!)!

    1. Hannah M.

      *also I shouldn’t have judged the convict. I just misunderstood his actions and I didn’t get why he was doing things like a criminal. Now I know why.

      This is an edit that I forgot to add LOL.

  12. janem

    In chapters 40-42 of “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens, there is a theme of love and connections. In chapter 41, Pip is very on edge from having Provis stay at his home, he is worried about trying to find him a suitable disguise and hiding him from authorities. Once Herbert gets home, Pip immediately explains the complicated situation. Though he is shocked, Herbert consoles Pip and stays at his side. I think Pip really loves Herbert, seeing him as a close friend and a brother.

    Next, Provise explains his childhood to Pip and Herbert. He was an orphan and had to steal to survive. He told them about how he faced many different punishments, and has been to so many different prisons. Hearing about Provis’s rough life, I think the reader can now see that he is struggling for a relationship. At first, I saw The Convict as just a convict that exaggerated Pip’s misdemeanor. But now I see him in a different light. He probably saw himself in Pip, and instantly felt connected to him. I think he just wants to act like a father to Pip, since he has lived a pretty lonely life.

    Lastly, a piece of Miss Havisham’s past is revealed. At first she is just seen to be a spoiled, snobbish, mysterious lady. We then later see how harsh she was to Estella and that she wants her to break hearts and be cruel. Now we see that she was acting coldly from love. More specifically, a broken heart. We knew she had been stood up at the alter, but didn’t consider it an excuse for her behavior. In chapter 42, Provis describes Compeyson, a man he committed crimes for. Realizing how nasty he is and how he made the convict feel, we can empathize for Miss Havisham, really getting to understand what she went through.

    These three chapters show a constant theme of the importance of love and relationships, which is surely going to be of significant importance to the plot and chapters to come.

  13. Zoe

    In chapter 40-42 you get to see more of Pip’s convict’s backstory. Although Pip is ashamed of this low class criminal being the one to give him a fortune, he soon pities him for what happened. The theme in these chapters is appearance vs. reality. Although this convict looks low class no matter the clothes or hair cut, he isn’t as bad as he might seem. He was raised up as a criminal. It wasn’t his fault that he was always in jails when he was young. He worked hard to get money and food to live, but ended up having to steal and getting into jail once again. He finally joins a company later in his life, although it’s illegal, and his found out by the government and must be trialed. When he is trialed next to Compeyson, he is also deemed guilty by the judge. He looked older and more as a low class criminal so he got more fault for their crimes. He got double the time than Compeyson, and Compeyson lied to the judge with his lawyer. That was the reason that the convict swore to bash in his head. He wasn’t a bad person, only someone looking for revenge. All of this relates to appearance vs. reality because the convict looked more as a low class criminal and got more blame. This only shows that you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, especially in this storyline.

  14. Sunna

    Throughout these chapters, the theme of nature vs. nurture comes into play with the convict. In these chapters, we find out more about the convict’s past, whose name is revealed to be Abel Magwitch. On page 346, he says, “”I first became aware of myself, down in Essex, a thieving turnips for my living. Summun had run away from me — a man — a tinker — and he’d took the fire with him, and left me wery cold.’” And on page 347, he continues with, “‘Tramping, begging, thieving, working sometimes when I could — though that warn’t as often as you may think, till you put the question whether you would ha’ been over ready to give me work yourselves — a bit of a poacher, a bit of a labourer, a bit of a waggoner, a bit of a haymaker, a bit of a hawker, a bit of most things that don’t pay and lead to trouble, I got to be a man.’” This clearly shows that Magwitch had a difficult childhood, and it was somewhat like Pip’s. They were both orphans and didn’t have things just handed to them. If Magwitch has had been raised differently, his entire life would have been different. He would not have led a life of crime and may have done something else, like started a family or helped others. This has to do with how he was nurtured. It has nothing to do with his nature, which is what makes this theme so important. It wasn’t in Magwitch’s nature when he was born to be a criminal or to threaten people, but it has become a part of him because of how his childhood was. I’m not necessarily excusing him forcing a child to steal for him, but it just shows that no one was born a criminal. It doesn’t just spontaneously happen. Magwitch grew into the person that he is overtime. In fact, the same can be said for Pip. He was raised a certain way, but once he was exposed to a more luxurious lifestyle, his personality changed to some extent. He was not born one way, but he slowly became another overtime. That‘s why the theme of nature vs. nurture is so important to this novel, especially now that we know about Magwitch’s past.

    1. josepha4

      I think it’s a good observation that it took him a while to change his thoughts, it didn’t happen in days it took many years

  15. josepha4

    Throughout the chapters read 40-42, the one filled most with suspense was chapter 42. It is filled with important background information crucial to other characters past, and it filled the wholes that we wanted to know. One important thing to observe however is the fact that the way somebody looks doesn’t hide their true personality and behavior, Also, nature vs. nurture. Both of these topics can be observed in the convict Magwitch.
    It seems that when Pip try’s to hide who Magwitch is there is no doubt that he doesn’t belong wearing those clothes. In a previous chapter we can see this in Joe, where he knows he shouldn’t be in that attire. Pip is again trying to change someone and the way they naturally are and trying to convert them to his own lifestyle. We can also see this in the time when Compeyson is let off with less time than Magwitch because it was easier to blame him based on his appearance , Magwitch looks uncivilized whereas the other man looked like a fine gentleman, event though on the inside Magwitch wasn’t the mastermind of the scheme.
    For example,” Whatever he put on, became him less than what he had worn before. To my thinking, there was something in him that made it hopeless to disguise him” it shows Pip that no matter he wants somebody to look it won’t change the way they are.
    Another theme is nature vs. nurture, the convict (Magwitch) didn’t have an upbringing he doesn’t even remember his reason for name or how he was named, he just knows his name the same way he knows the sky is blue. He believes that he was raised to be nothing more than a criminal, mean and greedy. On the other hand though, he treats Pip like a son and he hasn’t known him for more than that two days in his childhood. Instead of being a dirty criminal like he was raised, his genetics say that he is a caring and generous person and lucky enough he chooses to acts on the way he is naturally rather than the way he is supposed to be. He strives to be more than he is and since he can’t do it himself he does it through Pip. For example,” What were you brought up to be asked Pip? A warment, dear boy”. The convicts dream of supporting somebody else have come true and now all he wants from Pip is to be a gentleman the way he can never be.

  16. maxwellw

    In tonight’s reading, we gain some insight into Pip’s convict, Magwitch. He was an orphaned child and lived a life of crime out of necessity. His earliest memory is of stealing turnips to feed himself. As a young man, he met a gentleman criminal named Compeyson and fell under his power. Compeyson had already driven another accomplice, Arthur, into alcoholism and madness. Arthur, Magwitch says, was driven to despair by the memory of a wealthy woman he and Compeyson had once victimized. Magwitch remembers a woman from his own past and becomes distraught, but he does not tell Herbert and Pip about her. He continues, saying that when he and Compeyson were caught, Compeyson turned on him, using his gentleman’s manners to obtain a light sentence at the trial. Magwitch wanted revenge, and Compeyson was the man Pip saw him struggling with that night on the marsh. We also learn about Miss Havisham’s true motive for raising Estella to break men’s hearts, as she was conned herself.

  17. stephaniec

    In chapter 42, many revelations occured that supported the theme of appearance vs reality, or specifically in this case, do not judge a book by it’s cover. For example, Pip first encountered the convict desperate for food, beaten, and filthy. Most people, including Pip, would have acted fearful and cautious around the convict in these conditions. However in spite of that, in chapter 42 we saw the true backstory of the convict that showed his life choices and decisions that got him to the point he was. Likewise to Pip, the convict, who called himself Abel Magwitch, started his life as a starving orphan who had to steal for his survival. The convict said “‘I first became aware of myself, down in Essex, a thieving turnips for my living.’” (page 346). The convict surrounded himself with the wrong people, including a man named Compeyson. Essentially, Compeyson had the appearance of a gentleman, but when it came down to it was only looking out for himself. When Magwitch and Compeyson were in court, the judge saw the common appearance of Magwitch to represent his character within, which was completely untrue. Therefore, Magwitch was served with the more cruel punishments than Compeyson. Overall, we learned the reasoning of why the convict was the way he was, and the reasoning was that appearance vs reality impacted his life tremendously. I think Dickens’ included and continuously portrayed this theme to prove how significant it is in the novel and in our own lives.

  18. Rcey Ortega

    In chapter 42, Pip’s convict tells Pip and Herbert about himself. Mr. Provis, Pip’s convict, went to prison with two other people. There names were Compeyson and Arther. They went to jail because they were in a “bad thing” with some rich lady and made a lot of money. “Him and Compeyson had been in a bad thing with a rich lady some years afore, and they made a pot of money by it;…” (Pg 348) When they went to trial, Compeyson blamed everything on Mr. Provis. Mr. Provis got 14 years and Compeyson got 7 years. Provis promised Compeyson that when they get out, he was going to beat the snot out of him. “Once out of this court, I’ll smash that face o’ yourn,”…(pg 351) While they were on the ship, both of them found a way to escape. Provis found him and started to fight him. However, at the last second he escaped and Provis got sent to prison for life. This didn’t stop Mr. Provis so he found another way out. “I didn’t stop for life, dear boy and Pip’s comrade, being here.” (Pg 352) When he finished, Herbert passed Pip a note. “Young Havisham’s name was Arthur. Compeyson is the man who professed to be Miss Havisham’s lover.” This note has me thinking what will happen in the next chapter. Will we meet them?

  19. Kate Ma.

    In chapter 42, the convict starts to expose his life story and mysteries in the book are starting to be solved. Magwitch, Pip’s convict told Pip the stories of him being in and out of jail and then how he teamed up with a man, Compeyson and Arthur who did a lot of crime together. The three of them eveidentally steal money from Miss. Havisham and basically ruin her life. Magwitch wasn’t the even evil man everyone thought he was, but actually a caring man who did everything for survival. Guilt and shame play a big role in these chapters because I can get a feel of guilt from Magwitch as he tells his tales. I also can see some guilt in Pip by mistaking his benefactor for nothing but a low life criminal but now he sees him as a hard working caring man after all that he has done for him. Pip comes to a realization that he immediately thought of “his convict” as his “convict” instead of the kind man he is. Pip knows that Compeyman is out to get Magwitch so Pip decides to take Magwitch to England in order to keep him safe. These chapters show a change in Pips behaviors by actually returning the favor to people. Magwitch turned his life around and now it’s time for Pip to turn his around. Pip is starting to show a gradual change of feeling and behaviors towards others who treat him right. These chapters were very important to the book because they solved many mysteries and also changed Pip.

    1. Brishti Sarkar

      I agree and I also think that Pip will continue to change the way he acts towards others. I think this played a key role in the way Pip is growing up.

  20. Brishti Sarkar

    In chapters 40-42, the theme of appearance v. reality is further explored. Throughout chapter 42, we learn more about Magwitch, Pip’s convict, and his backstory. He, like Pip, grew up an orphan, but he was in many different families, and the first time he went to jail was when he stole turnips because he was starving. When he grew up, he got into business with a man named Compeyson, who we find out is the man who broke Miss Havisham’s heart. Compeyson got Magwitch into a lot of trouble, and Compeyson got less harsh of a punishment than Magwitch because he looked more like a gentleman. The theme of appearance v. reality plays in here because they judged Compeyson based on how he looks to decide that he was more innocent, and they judged Magwitch to be more guilty because he looked less pleasant. The reality is that Magwitch was not as guilty of the crimes as Compeyson. Another way this theme relates to the text is that both Pip and the reader judge Magwitch based on how it is described that he looks. Dickens does this to reflect how humans judge people based on how they look without knowing their story. Magwitch appears to be a gruesome, disgusting convict, whereas the reality is that he had a troubled past. Overall, the theme of appearance v. reality plays an important role in the backstory of Magwitch.

  21. MadiR

    Arthur Havisham, Ms. Havisham’s brother, was a very important character in tonight’s reading. In chapter 42 Charles Dickens reveals the characters who attributed to Ms. Havisham’s broken heart. He does this through Provis who’s real name is Magwitch and who was known to Pip as his convict. Provis tells his story of the other convict to Pip and Herbert. Provis in describing the other convict, who’s name is Compeyson, states that there was a man named Arthur associated with Compeyson. Compeyson was the other convict on the marshes that night when Pip, Joe, and the soldiers had found them in the middle of a fight. There was a very good reason for the fight to be going on that Provis explains to Pip and Herbert. Provis goes to a trial with Compeyson because of what they have been doing in their so called job. Compeyson being more wealthy only receives 7 years in jail but Provis receives 14 years. “And when the verdict come, warn’t it Compeyson as was recommended to mercy on account of good character and bad company, and giving up all the information he could age me, and warn’t it me as got never a word but guilty? And when I says to Compeyson, ‘once out of this court, I’ll smash that face o’ yourn,’ ain’t it Compeyson as prays the judge to be protected, and gets to turnkeys stood betwixt us?”(page 351) Arthur and Compeyson were very sneaky men. So when Arthur thought of a greedy plan to receive money they went all in. Arthur introduced Compeyson to Ms. Havisham and she instantly fell in love giving him gifts and money. As we learned before, Mr. Pocket, Herbert’s father, had tried to warn her not to give Compeyson that much before they were wed and Ms. Havisham would not listen. Ms. Havisham truly believed that Compeyson loved her. But he deceived her on the day of the wedding taking all the money and gifts he received with him. The theme of money leads to the theme of guilt and shame. Arthur Havisham due to his trickery died because of his guilt. For a while Arthur expressed pained cries for help because of what he was imagining. Compeysons wife took care of him for the most part but could do nothing for him when he imagined Ms. Havisham in her wedding dress pulling him up out of bed and plopping him down dead. As he imagined this he leans up and falls down dead right in front of Compeysons wife’s eyes. This chapter made me believe that there is more to the themes money and guilt in “Great Expectations”.

  22. trinityt

    In chapters 40-42, especially in chapter 42, the theme appearance v. reality were found, in the character of the convict.
    In chapter 42, the convict told Pip, and Herbert his backstory. In the past, Magwitch had committed a lot of crimes by stealing, but it was because he didn’t have a choice. “‘…I first became aware of myself, down in Essex, a thieving turnips for my living…'” (pg.346). The reason that Mr.Provis stole in the past was because he did it for survival. He stole turnips because he was starving.

    At first, I didn’t like Mr.Provis at all. However, after reading his backstory, I felt bad for him. He steals because he has to. Not to mention, after all that he went through, he still wants to make Pip a gentleman to thank him for the good deed that he did years ago. I felt bad that Pip wanted to get rid of him. Afterall, he just wanted the best for Pip. Mr.Provis may look like the worst part of society, but that’s not who he actually is. He was just misunderstood!

  23. Maddie

    In chapter 42, the convict is introduced to Pip and Herbert. His name is Mr. Provis, and he tells them his life story. He has been in jail multiple times, along with two others, Compeyson and Arthur. Compeyson was actually the other convict that got in a fight with Mr. Provis when Pip went searching for them that night.
    A theme that I see in this chapter is Appearance vs. reality. When the convict comes, Pip pictures him as the same old dangerous man seen on the marshes when he was a little kid. Pip doesn’t see who the man really is, which is someone who has devoted all of their life and money and earnings to Pip, which is why he has been poor and had to steal.
    Another place where this theme is shown is in the appearance of the convict to the readers. We always used to see the convict as the bad guy; a dangerous man who was mean to the small child Pip. And sometimes it is hard to believe that someone has changed, so that is why we still think Mr. Provis is unchanged, even though he is very different than when we first met him. I believe that as Pip gets to know him better, he will be more welcoming and more trusting. He just needs to learn that people change.

  24. johnh1

    Now a lot of the novel is about money. For example, earlier we heard that Ms. Havisham had a lover who left her for money. When Provis talks about his past he mentions this man. It turns out it wasn’t for anything but money and her lover, Compeyson, was just a con man. Also, We learn about the convict, Provis’s, backstory. This relates to nature vs. nurture because he was judged harshly by people when he needed food and stole and this grew him into who he became.


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