Quick Index Board Index Home FAQ Site Map
|Mismanagement in Education
Written by Robbin
(9/29/2010 12:10 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Learning to respect pheasants, penned by Mia I.
I agree Sir Thomas has changed. I think you make a great point that the Bertram children might have benefitted from other adult role models. The girls at least did have the governess Mrs. Lee, who was encouraging to Fanny (17) but perhaps the Miss Bertrams were not disposed to learn more than facts and figures from a governess? It was not, I suppose like Poor Miss Taylor whose “manners… were always particularly good. Their propriety, simplicity, and elegance, would make them the safest model for any young woman” (E, 32). I do also think you are right and Tom, Maria and Julia did not have so much of an intellectual relationship as Fanny and Edmund and their pleasures have been centered on bustle and frivolity. I think they, but Edmund, reinforce each others bad qualities.
Mrs. Norris seems an active prim and proper lady and Sir Thomas is disposed to see people in the best light possible. Mrs. Norris I dare say has, for a long time, done a credible job of spouting the right morals and attitudes but I do not feel she can teach them to anyone because she does not know how to live by them. What I mean is, just for example, she has not generosity, kindness and tolerance so she cannot impart them to others but since she is vain, selfish and intolerant she passes these on to Maria and Julia quite easily because actions speak louder than words. I doubt Sir Thomas has met the Mrs. Norris who scolded Fanny so cruelly in Ch. 15. She would be careful to hide such behavior from him and I think the longer Sir Thomas was away the worse she became—she had too much power while he was gone and it went to her head.
Sir Thomas has been somewhat alerted to Mrs. Norris’ faults now by her failure to see the impropriety of the acting scheme and the foolishness of a wintery ten mile drive to Sotherton in her efforts to secure Mr. Rushworth but she is rather slippery and has still managed to avoid full exposure. Sir Thomas is still generous in his criticism:
Sir Thomas gave up the point, foiled by her evasions, disarmed by her flattery; and was obliged to rest satisfied with the conviction that where the present pleasure of those she loved was at stake, her kindness did sometimes overpower her judgment. (20)
Sir Thomas’ generosity is one of his good traits and it is hard to fault him for it but I do wish he would see Mrs. Norris more clearly than he does. Hi Mia I, I am glad to see you at the group read! It is hard to learn to respect pheasants! LOL! Thanks. (:D)
Groupread is maintained by Myretta with WebBBS 3.21.