From plot debriefs to key motifs, Thug Notes’ Great Expectations by Charles Dickens Summary & Analysis has you covered with themes, symbols, important quotes, and more.
Great Expectations (1861) | Written by: Charles Dickens | Published by: Dover Thrift
Thug Notes Summary and Analysis
What up G? Welcome back to Thug Notes. This week we keepin it Victorian with Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
This book tells the story of Pip, a street kid who be shackin with his crooked sister and her hubby Joe. One day while payin his respects at his parents’ grave, a cracked out convict rolls up to him and demands some food and a nail file to escape his chains. Pip helps a brotha out, but later sees that fool get got by the po-lice.
Later, an uppity cracker named Pumblechook arranges for Pip to kick it with a rich broad named Miss Haversham and her adopted daughter Estella. Now Estella may be fine, but she be actin a straight cock-tease to my boy Pip. Pip be thinkin that Miss Haversham wanna prime him to get paid like a gentleman, but she shuts his ass down and tells him to hustle as a blacksmith with his po Uncle Joe.
Then one day some lawyer named Jaggers tells Pip that he bout to get PAID and inherit a swoel fortune. So Pip kicks Joe’s po ass to the curb and heads to London where he gonna learn to be a playa. Pip be thinkin that Miss Haversham gave him all dat cash, so maybe she be preppin him to marry Estella.
One night Pip be visited by some playa named Abel Magwitch, who turns out to be dat convict from the graveyard. He tells Pip that it was him who gave Pip all dem stacks of cash.
Now Pip be wiggin out that he ain’t bein primed to marry Estella, so he
rolls up to that ho Haversham’s crib and confesses his love for Estella. But that hood rat shuts this stunna down.
Years later, Pip dun fu**ed up and ends up boned out. Uncle Joe does Pip one last solid and pays off all his debt. Now Pip be feelin like a fool for dissin him all them years ago. So Pip decide to stop frontin wit dem rich folk and keeps it real with the boy who got his back. Then one day while peepin the old Haversham crib, Pip runs in to Estella who be off the short lease of her ex-husband and Haversham, and decide she wanna be cool with Pip. At the end of the book, Pip say he “saw no shadow of another parting from her.”
Now one of the main things my boy Charlie D tryin to say up in here is if you makin big ass assumptions about what the future holds, you sho as hell got anotha thing coming homeboy. You can see this here disconnect between expectations and reality in the character of Haversham. This broad always wearin an old crusty wedding dress even though she ain’t married. It’s like she walkin around erry day showin that she was expectin way more out of life than she actually got.
Likewise, Pip always expectin righteous things to happen like Miss H makin him a gentleman and gettin freaky with that girl Estella. But this stunna is blind to the peeps that actually got his back.
For example, when Pip finds out it was Abel that give him those stacks of cash and not that hag Haversham, he gets all crunk cuz it ain’t what he expected. When on the real, he should be geeked up that he got himself a sugar daddy.
Another theme up in here is that havin mad money corrupts yo mind and yo social relations. Before Pip becomes a rich play boy, that gitty cat Pumblechook be disrespectin him all the time. But after Pip makes bank, Pumblechook starts treatin him like he da man.
Also, when my boy Pip gets dem fat pockets, he starts dissin Joe cuz he all po. On page 197, Pip says He would even PAY to get Joe’s weak ass outta his face in spite of the fact that on page 127, Pip straght up calls this stunna an angel. Mo money, Mo problems blood.
Show quotes as he says that.
Consider this sh** right here-conflicting values in this playa’s life be told trough the images of stars and fire. That trick Estella’s name comes from a Latin word that means star, whereas my man Joe be associated with da forge and fireplace. Mah honkie Dickens links that hoe with stars cuz although stars may be pretty, they straight up unreachable- just like Pip’s romantic expectations. But on the other hand, fire is of the earth, and Dickens links Joe with fire to emphasize that down-home feeling of a life in the hood without whack ass delusions.
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