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|Servants not as lavish as they seem
Written by Delories
(9/18/2006 5:05 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, 4 people and 3 servants, penned by Barbara
We sometimes get caught up in the fact that in JA's world, people who are said to be living on small incomes have servants -- this is because we are judging their lives by the standards of our own. Nowadays, having three servants -- or even one full-time, live-in servant -- is seen as the province of the rich.
Ok, now. Imagine your own life, today, in 2006, without a washing machine. Imagine that every time you wanted/needed hot water, it had to be pumped and boiled. Imagine a world (I can just hear that man's voice from all those movie trailers!) in which there were no prepared foods, and you had to stitch your own sheets. What I'm trying to say is that nowadays, everyone with the means to be reading this post has the equivalent of the Dashwood women's servants -- they are just electronic servants, such as a household appliance, or outsourced servants, such as the cashier at McDonald's, the worker in the frozen food preparation plant, or the textile factory machinist.
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