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KS3/4 English: Pride and Prejudice

Compare two directors' portrayals of Elizabeth's first visit to Pemberley

Main image of KS3/4 English: Pride and Prejudice
AuthorJessica Hardiman
TopicPride and Prejudice
Key WordsAusten, Pride and Prejudice, Pemberley, Mr. Darcy, Mrs. Reynolds
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Two extracts taken from two adaptations of Pride and Prejudice showing Elizabeth Bennett's first visit to Pemberley.

A useful extract for comparing two adaptations and a director's choices when adapting from novels.

This lesson idea uses the film extracts to develop the students' comparative language. It reinforces comparison skills and asks students to apply these specifically to moving image texts. This lesson could work both as part of a piece of coursework on a whole novel, or as part of Media work on comparing direction. In the latter it also revises Paper One analysis skills.

Lesson Objective

  • To meaningfully compare the faithfulness of two film adaptations to the original written text citing evidence from both media texts


Students read the description of Pemberley (Elizabeth's viewing of the interior) beginning at the paragraph 'They descended the hill, crossed the bridge…'. Students are asked to write in their books a list of things that the reader is supposed to understand after having read this chapter (e.g. that there are differing opinions both of Mr. Darcy and of Mr. Wickham than the reader was previously aware) and to give evidence of this from the text.. Students should aim to come up with at least three points. Extension: what priority would the students give to these points, and why?


Main Attraction

Students are asked to feedback from their starter, and a class list is compiled of the various key points this extract should bring to light. The students are then asked to consider the two film extracts, and the question 'How faithful are the two adaptations to the original text?'

Students are then asked to refer to the class list that they have made together and to record notes of evidence from the two versions that the director was trying to get across any of these key points. This could be done in groups, with one group looking for evidence of a particular thing, so that all the class will eventually have fed back a variety of information about the two extracts, and will have full annotations of the various key points. Students should feed back their findings after watching the two extracts, while the rest of the class take notes on this.

Extension: brighter students should consider how the key points identified in the starter are prioritised by the director, and look for evidence that the director wishes to convey one point more strongly than another.


End Credits

Students should revise comparative language and then write a short paragraph focussing on one key point (perhaps the students should write about their group's key area, as they will certainly have notes on this!).

The students should then compare Austen's text to the two adaptations, discussing which adaptation they felt was a more faithful presentation of Austen's text. Students should read out their paragraphs and provide constructive feedback on one another's paragraphs, if possible using a partial mark scheme provided by the teacher.


External Links

Video Clips
1. 1967: Pemberley (2:32)
2. 1995: Pemberley (6:02)
Downloadable Teaching Resources

Related Films and TV programmes

Thumbnail image of Jane Austen's Emma (1996)Jane Austen's Emma (1996)

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Thumbnail image of Pride and Prejudice (1967)Pride and Prejudice (1967)

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Thumbnail image of Pride and Prejudice (1995)Pride and Prejudice (1995)

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See also

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Emma (1996)KS3/4 English: Emma (1996)

Explore Austen's take on social interaction between the upper classes

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Mansfield Park (1983)KS3/4 English: Mansfield Park (1983)

Exploring Mrs. Norris's characterisation on the page and on screen

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Persuasion (1995)KS3/4 English: Persuasion (1995)

Study Austen's presentation of 18th century social interactions

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Persuasion 2 (1995)KS3/4 English: Persuasion 2 (1995)

Explore Austen's presentation of characters' emotions through film

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Pride and Prejudice 2KS3/4 English: Pride and Prejudice 2

Compare how two different directors portray Lydia's elopement

Thumbnail image of KS3/4 English: Sense and Sensibility (1981)KS3/4 English: Sense and Sensibility (1981)

Comparing descriptive language with descriptive techniques in film

Thumbnail image of Jane Austen on TelevisionJane Austen on Television

TV's takes on English literature's most perceptive and subtle satirist

Thumbnail image of TV Literary AdaptationTV Literary Adaptation

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