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|Jane Fairfax and Maria Bertram
Written by Ramya
(3/19/2011 10:21 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, A "whole novel" theme, penned by Laraine
I mentioned in a previous post (linked below) my opinion that Jane Fairfax, in the height of anger and desperation, makes a last-ditch attempt to get Frank to confess his engagement to the Churchills.
We have already seen that Jane has pride when she tries to refuse generosity from Mr. Knightley (although she may have had added reason to do so).
After the miserable day at Box-Hill, Jane decided to close with Mrs. Elton's offer after learning that Frank left Highbury w/o attemting to reconcile with her. That seems to be a decision taken in the heat of anger.
In her first letter to Frank, she just dissolves the engagement. If she had any hope that this would induce Frank to "tell all" she is very disappointed. (I disbelieve Frank's confession that he "forgot" to post his reply to Jane). But by now, she is committed, so to speak, into Governessing. She could as easily have resolved to go and join the Campbells in Ireland. The words JA uses to describe Maria Bertram could well apply to Jane: She was in a state of mind to be glad that she had secured her fate beyond recall: that she had pledged herself anew to [Governessing]; her mind became cool enough to seek all the comfort that pride and self revenge could give.
Finally Jane attempts a last touch by sending Frank the direction of Mr. Smallridge. Finally Frank is aroused from his stupor and is convinced of her seriousness in breaking off the engagement. In this instance, Jane has a much much better fate than Maria Bertram did. And neither do I think Frank is anything like Henry Crawford. Sorry for long, rambling post. Hope it makes sense.
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