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Lydia Bennett Wasn't Wrong, But That Doesn't Make Her Right

Or, 'Pride and Prejudice' Rewatch Finale Part the First

by Rob Zacny
Mar 27 2019, 9:24pm

Things are going well, a little too well, for Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. Which means it's time for Lydia Bennett to stop being a supporting player in this comedy and become a star in her own romantic drama. Today on the first part of our Pride and Prejudice rewatch finale, we discuss the fatalist snark of Caroline Bingley, Lizzie's growing maturity and awareness, and what Georgiana Darcy reveals about this story.

But the biggest topic of discussion is Lydia's disastrous elopement with Mr. Wickham. How do we approach a story that treats as a scandal the sexual agency of a teenage girl, and underplays the predatory aspect of Wickham's conduct? If the entire subplot is built on an outdated, misogynist foundation, is it still fair to find Lydia to be a loathsome heel by the end of it?

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