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|Emma loves her abilities…
Written by Robbin
(4/6/2008 12:36 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Is Emma a liar too?, penned by Lila
I think, as Ivonne said, Emma values Mr. Knightley’s opinions highly and further I think she is a little shocked at their difference of opinion and the fact that unbeknownst to her by sloughing off Mr. Martin from Harriet she was also disobliging Mr. Knightley. I am sure she had no idea her friend could have any interest in the matter and suddenly Mr. Knightly, an equal, is there disapproving her castling of farmers, vicars and parlor boarders. Until then I think Emma felt secure in her superiority and in her opinions being right about Harriet and who was right for who—neither Harriet, by temper nor Mr. Martin, by situation could disagree or confront her with what she is doing but Mr. Knightley does and can. Emma cared not a fig for Mr. Martin and enticed Harriet to reject him without a thought but IMO her habit of valuing Mr. Knightley’s opinion has to intrude on the surety of her opinions in the matter and ought to force her to question her actions and the reasons for them.
"You have made her too tall, Emma," said Mr. Knightley.
Emma knew that she had, but would not own it, and Mr. Elton warmly added… (Chapter 6)
It is funny to me that despite the fact Emma’s too stubborn to admit how far her efforts to match Harriet and Mr. Elton have actually gone, Mr. Knightley gleans it from what has happened and Emma’s reactions to what he has to say. Perhaps it can be put down to experience on his part. Another example of Emma’s stubbornness is when she makes Harriet too tall in her portrait and Mr. Knightley calls her on it but Emma will not admit it. What I find so interesting is that the admission seems so inconsequential yet Emma will not do it. However, I am not attempting to make excuses for Emma. I agree with Tracy W that Emma knows her responses to Mr. Knightley are far less than truthful about her matchmaking. It is sad to say but I think Emma does not like to admit a fault especially to Mr. Knightley. This side of Emma reminds me of a line in Persuasion, please excuse this Austenations moment, about Lady Russell in Chapter 24: “She loved Anne better than she loved her own abilities…” but right now IMO Emma does not seem to love the truth more than her own abilities. (;D)
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