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|I'll bet my old hat that the Hawkins' would not be so rich
Written by Nina RG
(2/22/2011 12:18 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Well, as Bristol was even more deeply involved in, penned by Kathleen Glancy
During the discussion between Jane and Mrs Elton in Ch. 35 (and I do feel so sorry for Jane that she can't get Mrs Elton to understand that she should just back off!) Jane says,
"Excuse me, ma'am, but this is by no means my intention; I make no inquiry myself, and should be sorry to have any made by my friends. When I am quite determined as to the time, I am not at all afraid of being long unemployed. There are places in town, offices, where inquiry would soon produce something -- offices for the sale, not quite of human flesh, but of human intellect."
And Mrs Elton quickly (and guiltily?) replies,
"Oh! my dear, human flesh! You quite shock me; if you mean a fling at the slave-trade, I assure you Mr. Suckling was always rather a friend to the abolition." (35)
Why is Mrs Elton so quick to see an illusion to the slave trade when Jane was clearly talking of governessing? Did Jane hit a sore spot? Is Mrs Elton ashamed that her fortune came from the slave trade?
If you look for them there are quite a few references to slavery and the slave trade in Emma, which can be said to be JA's "anti-slavery novel". I don't think it that unlikely that JA would give Mrs Elton connections to the slave trade:) I mean, there must be a reason why JA chose Bristol as Mrs Elton's hometown, and not, say, Steventon or Meryton;)
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