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I'm over 50 Always loved Jane Austen , but now on re-reading ..

(79 Posts)
Laska42 Wed 26-Nov-14 19:11:04

I'm thinking Marianne Dashwood is just a spoilt unrealistic and totally stupid brat.. I want to slap her!
Ok rant over ..

SaucyMare Wed 26-Nov-14 19:18:37

None of the dashwoods are nice, if i remember correctly

islandmama Wed 26-Nov-14 19:19:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Laska42 Wed 26-Nov-14 19:24:11

grin I think we are supposed to like Elinor because she is the sensible one but I want to slap her also ..

I'm also a bit disturbed thse days about the age gaps of people getting married i.e 35 and 17 (Brandon and dashwoood) , and 21 and 37 (knightley and woodhouse) .. , (but perhaps thats just a bit post recent scandals )

I keep reminding myself things were very diferent inthose days..

I think of all her characters i like Anne Elliot the best ...

SaucyMare Wed 26-Nov-14 19:26:56

No one in the fanny novel is even standable, they are either bastards or soppy.

I love emma, and just realised i got the dashwoods confused, they were the ones chucked out of the house by the step brother heir. She is a very modern character, these days she is very normal i think but is a bit bratty.

I was thinking of the harp playing friend who was the brother the heroin had a crush on, both she and him were baduns. (Sorry i am really bad at book titles and names)

BOFster Wed 26-Nov-14 19:27:08

Yes, Anne is a decent sensible woman. Emma is a bit of a bitch, and the Dashwoods are dreadful bores. I like Elizabeth Bennett a lot, especially when she stands up to Lady Catherine.

SaucyMare Wed 26-Nov-14 19:30:39

Not sure i see the bitch in emma, but i like her floors (is that the correct spelling?) where as all the sensible ones make me yawn.

Laska42 Wed 26-Nov-14 19:30:44

A smelly 'cottage' in the Devonshire vales , 4 bedrooms 2 drawing rooms , and officesand kichen etc e behind and 4 garrets (no doubt for the servants ) above the like of which would now cost a cool £1m or more no doubt ..

£500 year would have been quite a lot in those days..

notsogoldenoldie Wed 26-Nov-14 19:33:01

Another Anne Elliott fan here. Loved Persuasion best of all JA's novels. As for all those "heroines" - Marianne Dashwood: silly and spoilt; Emma-interfering, superior and spoilt; Fanny Price- vapid and passive. I suppose Eliza Bennet was at least intelligent and witty.

Laska42 Wed 26-Nov-14 19:37:58

saucy you mean Miss Crawford? I quite liked her but then she was more of a gel of our time not JAs i think ..

Fanny Price .. (gag, slap, slap)

Julia Bertram , has some go in her , but shes not made that much of by JA .

Actualy I really love Jane Austen... have read them many times and still enjoy them, Its just the first time ive really disliked Marianne...its got to be my age (Btw I V happily married ..but have young adult kids , they all unrealistic romantically , perhaps I was also )


RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Wed 26-Nov-14 19:57:21

Saucy - flaws

I like Marianne - she's only 17, and nearly everybody is a prat then.

I'm currently reading this as it was mega-cheap on Kindle. It's really funny - am hugely enjoying it.

BOFster Wed 26-Nov-14 20:01:00

Ooh, thanks for the tip, Remus, they look great.

notsogoldenoldie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:06:24

Was Miss Crawford the one who made the joke about Admirals and Rears? Something about homosexuality? A bit risqué, maybe, but apparently Austen was notoriously cruel in her observations in real life. That's the only bit I remember of Mansfield Park, apart from Bertram senior being a slave trader (not sure that's strictly correct, but there are hints..).

MagicMonday Wed 26-Nov-14 20:06:32

I hated Persuasion as a teenager and thought it was dull. Loved Sense and Sensibility and Marianne. Persuasion and Anne Elliot are now my favourites by far. S&S captures an annoying, melodramatic teenager brilliantly though!

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:07:54

Yes re admirals and rears.

I like Mary Crawford more and more with each re-reading, actually. She's a bitch but at least she'd be fun at a party - unlike the revolting Fanny Price.

Hassled Wed 26-Nov-14 20:11:44

But isn't this why Jane Austen was such a great novelist? All her heroines (and heroes) have flaws. They're not overly romanticised, they're never perfect, but you still care about them because they seem more real for their flaws. We can recognise the bitchiness and the shallowness or whatever in ourselves.

Hassled Wed 26-Nov-14 20:12:55

And yes - if you read her letters, she was capable of quite gob-smacking (and very funny) bitchiness. She'd have held her own on MN.

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:19:09

The nastiest line from the letters = Mrs. Hall, of Sherborne, was brought to bed yesterday of a dead child, some weeks before she was expected, owing to a fright. I suppose that she happened unawares to look at her

notsogoldenoldie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:20:42

What irritates me about Austen is that she has been branded-or rebranded-as romantic fiction, when (imho at least) she's anything but. Her heroines are flawed, the stories predictable. I think her men are portrayed brilliantly and are often hysterically funny and foolish.

She's by far the best writer of English fiction, in my view.

SaucyMare Wed 26-Nov-14 20:35:25

Saucy - flaws


RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:40:01


notsogoldenoldie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:44:26

Quite, Remus! Her letters are so cruel. Maybe that's why Cassandra burned lots of them?

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Wed 26-Nov-14 20:50:08

I've never quite forgiven Cassandra tbh.

Laska42 Wed 26-Nov-14 21:05:32

ooh.. ive not read ther letters.. looks like i have a treat coming up !

Hassled Wed 26-Nov-14 21:36:07

The letters are a bit baffling because you don't have a hope in hell of remembering who's who - she writes about so many people - unless presumably you're a biographer/really obsessed. But I did enjoy them - and as with Remus's example, you don't need more than a couple of lines to have a clear idea of what she felt about Mrs Hall of Sherbourne's husband.

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