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Written by Line
(10/4/2005 7:55 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Lady Russell's reputation, penned by Joan Ellen
This passage struck me for another reason. Like others who have watched P2, I remember the scene where Louisa tells Captain Wentworth that the Musgroves think Lady Russell must have persuaded Anne against marrying Charles, and Captain Wentworth accepts this because it fits in with his idea of Lady Russell. However, in ch.4, JA definitely told us that Lady Russell had been in favour of the match. Now, JA could easily have written it so the two scenes agreed, to avoid reader confusion. ;-) She could have made LR *against* the match in the first place for the same reason she was against Anne marrying CW - that there was somebody better out there for her. However, JA understood exactly how gossip works. People draw their own conclusions for their own reasons, and eventually everyone "knows" that those conclusions are "fact". I just appreciate this bit of subtlety (and accuracy) on JA's part!
BTW, I agree that describing LR as a woman of great influence was a compliment to LR. I believe a woman in her position was *supposed* to use her influence on the people around her if she could (presumably for the better!)
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