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|Confidence & Responsibility
Written by Robbin
(10/26/2008 11:19 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, I wonder how Benwick's situation affected Wentworth's view..., penned by JanELT
She would have liked to know how he felt as to a meeting. Perhaps indifferent, if indifference could exist under such circumstances. He must be either indifferent or unwilling. Had he wished ever to see her again, he need not have waited till this time; he would have done what she could not but believe that in his place she should have done long ago, when events had been early giving him the independence which alone had been wanting. (Ch. 7)
Without addressing the L&T question of was Anne considered an adult, I think Anne accepted Frederick and it is also on her head that she ended the engagement—after all no one forced her to give him up. I think Lady Russell did all she could to show Anne the “dangers” of a long engagement and indulged in some emotional blackmail by convincing Anne it would be best for Frederick and played on her position as an almost mother but still it was Anne’s decision. Anne does not blame Lady Russell for her advice which although mired in her personal dislike of Frederick was not unsound—just turned out to be irrelevant to their situation because Frederick made fortune enough to marry rather quickly—see above. (;D) I think this is why Anne regrets her decision to end the engagement but does not blame Lady Russell.
I think had their engagement continued Frederick’s self-confidence might have supplanted worry about acquiring his fortune. I can imagine the letters full of assurance and enthusiasm he would receive from Anne also helping to stave off worries of that nature. If their engagement has lasted almost the entire eight years till news of Fanny’s death it is very possible Frederick might have begun to see the imprudence of long engagements. (;D) As it is I don’t think Benwick’s situation influenced his thoughts on Anne’s breaking off their engagement; at least so far (Ch. 18) because he has been too angry with her to be reasonable. In Ch. 4 he would not accept the prudence of breaking the engagement and could only see that Anne was persuaded by someone other than himself. Is there a bit of jealousy in this? It is not till Ch. 12 and Louisa’s fall that he begins to see the frailty of his unbending judgment of Anne’s so called weak-willed character. (;D)
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