in the first chapters of the book of Great Expectations
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Joe's character would never have become the compassionate, well loved character he is without Mrs. Joe and her abuse. She's the tough side of the marriage, and her toughness is actually quite warranted. Though there is a distinct age difference between Pip and his sister, she also has the responsibility of seeing him raised. It is evident that she is Pip's main caretaker, and that she takes her job seriously. Joe is the good cop to Mrs. Joe's bad cop. Note, I believe that one of the reasons Joe might be seen as not doing enough is the fact that he also knows his role and doesn'r overstep his bounds.