How does Dickens use satire to poke fun at funerals in Chapter 35 of Great Expectations?

1 Answer
Feb 19, 2018

Satire is the use of humor, irony, exaggeration or ridicule to expose and criticize one's stupidity or vices.


A great deal of mockery towards funerals comes in Chapter 35 of Great Expectations, where Mrs. Joe's funeral occurs.

The house is decorated by Mr. Trabb in a gaudy manner. He even coordinates a formal funeral procession and makes the villagers dress in black mourning costumes. Even Joe finds himself "entangled in a little black cloak tied in a large bow under his chin". This is downright disrespectful and prevents Joe from showing how much he was devoted to Mrs. Joe.

One of the boys knocks the door for Pip, because he assumes that Pip is too sad to do it by himself.

The children and women only came to the house to admire the "sable warders", not Mrs. Joe. They just wanted to explore the house and show off how they can behave and fake their respects at Mrs. Joe's funeral.