Great Expectations

Great Expectations

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Great Expectations Book 2, Chapter 21 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Wemmick walks Pip to Barnard's Inn and Pip observes his wooden features and all the little tokens of mourning that Wemmick wears. Pip asks Wemmick if London is "wicked" and Wemmick replies that one can get "cheated, robbed, and murdered" there just like anywhere else. When Pip suggests people commit such crimes just for revenge, Wemmick corrects him, saying many more people commit crimes for profit. Wemmick seems surprised that Pip finds crimes for profit to be "worse" than crimes committed for revenge. After depositing Pip at Barnard's, Wemmick is surprised by Pip's offer to shake hands.
Like Mr. Jaggers, Wemmick is rigidly professional and avoids engaging with human feelings, attributing London's crimes mostly to financial motives rather than to the emotion-driven revenge motives that Pip suggests.
Themes
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Pip is appalled by the dismal state of Barnard's Inn, which is sooty, rotting, and infested. He waits for young Mr. Pocket to return and let him into the rooms. Mr. Pocket returns with fresh fruit he has bought in Pip's honor and very graciously welcomes Pip into the grim apartment, apologizing for its condition and explaining that he and his father are poor. He and Pip suddenly recognize one another—young Mr. Pocket is the pale young gentleman Pip fought with in Miss Havisham's greenhouse.
Even though young Mr. Pocket is part of Miss Havisham's upper class family, he does not have any money—his class is not backed up by wealth. Yet despite his lack of money, young Mr. Pocket's gracious welcome attests to his generous spirit.
Themes
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Integrity and Reputation Theme Icon
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