Quick Index Board Index Home FAQ Site Map
|Indeed a mouse
Written by Martina
(10/15/2008 1:04 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, A mouse?, penned by Robbin
I don't find Anne acting with much dignity throughout the scenes at Uppercross. I certainly don't expect her to be fawning over him as the younger girls do, but I am disappointed that she doesn't lift up her chin, show a bit of pride and display any of the commendable traits that must have attracted him to her in the first place. She hasn't only lost her bloom and youth in these chapters, she has lost her entire persona, making her the last person in the world CW would even want to re-kindle a relationship with. She is truly unattractive in these chapters, wallowing in her misery as she is.
This is what I personally believe CW means when he says something to the affect of her being so altered. The people around her interpret his remark as meaning her physical appearance, but I think it has more to do with what he saw of her body language during those first moments.
They never speak once to each other during these weeks, except to exchange common courtesies. Granted, I agree with all the posts that CW's cold behaviour and flirting with younger women in front of Anne made things more awkward and conversation exceedingly difficult. But throughout these chapters she also tries to make herself as small and insignificant as possible. For someone who has harboured this love over 8 long years and dreamed of his coming back into her life some day, I would think she might try a little harder to try to make him remember her as she used to be! She has many good qualities and personal characteristics, but none of them are displayed while in his company.
When they first meet again, "her eye half met Captain Wentworth's." She can't even bring herself to look at him properly for a full second or two. I can just imagine her looking at the ground the entire time he is in the room.
At the first evening at the Musgroves, she is quiet the entire time listening to his voice and discerning the same mind. She is sitting next to Mrs. Musgrove and doesn't even hold a conversation with her over poor Dick. We know Anne is capable of being a sympathetic conversationalist, but in this instance all she did was "listen kindly" for a few minutes before being drawn back to listening to the conversations around her.
All 3 of them sitting on the same sofa, it is "agitations of Anne's slender form and pensive face." Why she doesn't just get up and walk away from this uncomfortable situation is beyond me. No, CW is the one who walks away when the conversation drifts to married couples!
She excuses herself from one other dinner at the Musgroves by pleading a headache (good job!) but soon after comes the scene where she and CW are alone together in the drawing room of the Cottage with little Charles on the sofa. She could not even thank him, that day or any other day subsequently. So she has lost the ability to be polite as well, it seems.
The long November walk -- she had a chance to bow out of it when the gentlemen made their appearance but "some feelings of interest and curiosity" made her continue and then "Anne's object was, not to be in the way of anybody..." Again, she doesn't talk much to anyone during the entire walk. She recites poetry to herself instead. Aagh!
All of this makes me see her as a shadow of her former self. During the first evening at the Musgrove dinner in CW's presence, Anne listens to the girls peppering CW with questions about life on board ship and it likely brings back memories of her own self, "which reminded Anne of the early days when she too had been ignorant." And the bit of conversation she later overhears, where CW asks if Anne ever danced, leads me to conclude that she very much enjoyed dancing (and with him!) in her younger days.
Which is why she strikes me as a little mouse during the first two months they are in contact. He behaves badly, fully agree. But she is pathetic and if I were CW, I wouldn't be the least bit tempted to renew the acquaintance.
Thank goodness the book doesn't stop there!
Groupread is maintained by Myretta with WebBBS 3.21.