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|JA's attitude to Mary.
Written by Rachel G
(10/3/2010 8:47 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Mary, penned by Bridget D
I'm pretty sure that JA intended Mary's indifference to religion and disinclination for country life to be rather clear indicators of a faulty nature.
As to city versus country life I believe she thought that country living was the better way. I cannot recall anything in her novels which suggests otherwise. Her letters suggest that she thought occasional visits to London were good for a spot of shopping and trips to the theatre, but not much else. A number of archived posts state that she was fond of the work of William Cowper, who's poem "The Task" includes the line "God made the country, man made the town".
My purpose in re-casting Mary and Edmund's situation in modern, non-religious terms was as a thought experiment, since I am trying during this GR to understand Mary's character and see things from her point of view. Anglican Christianity was an essential part of JA's world, but modern readers of her work come from a wide range of religions and perspectives. So I found it helpful to set the question of religion aside for the moment, and see where that would lead in understanding the character's differing viewpoints.
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