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|Mr Collins, Charlotte, and Lizzy
Written by Mary Anne
(4/20/2010 8:17 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Elizabeth "shooting from the hip" over Charlotte.., penned by jeffrey
Since I'm focusing during this read on conversations where there are major clashes between what is said and what is heard, this week's readings are a gold mine. Mr. Collins' proposal itself is an amazing thing from this POV, since he is almost literally deaf to Elizabeth's refusal. He hears her "no" but complacently assumes it's really a "yes" or will turn into one. (He may have what he considers well-grounded reasons for believing this, but I'll state for the record that I don't find him all that comical and this is part of it. Refusing her refusal and reminding her of her family's prospects with the entail . . . ugh. Just ugh.)
Likewise with Lizzy's reaction to the news that Charlotte is going to marry him. Charlotte's response to Lizzy's cry of "Impossible!" is interesting, that comment that "Just because you refused him did you think every woman would?" or words to that effect. Did Charlotte really think that was the cause of Lizzy's exclamation? It seems like a sly poke at Lizzy's vanity---not really intended to wound but to block the real point of the outcry, which was "I know you can't be considering marrying someone so stupid." And from there on, you can hear the THUD as the opposing points of view knock together.
Charlotte deserves better, but it can't be denied she goes into this with open eyes and a cool head. I can see Lizzy's point: I'd rather run out in traffic than marry Mr. Collins, but at least I have options these women didn't, so I can see Charlotte's too.
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