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|Elinor and Marianne: not so very different
Written by Elizabeth K
(9/6/2009 12:51 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Chapter 1: The Dashwood Sisters, penned by kathleen (elder)
Elinor is often thought of as being entirely composed and sensible all the time, I think, but the passage you point out clearly indicates that she is not. She may be calm and collected but underneath her self-control, Elinor does feel deeply and carries a lot of responsibility on her shoulders for a person of her age.
In contrast, Marianne is outspoken, vivacious and fun-loving, yet in an innocent way, and her "abilities were, in many respects, quite equal to Elinor's", as the passage you quote says. Those three words, "outspoken", "vivacious" and "fun-loving", could be applied to Lydia in P&P (are comparisons between JA novels allowed in GRs, BTW, or should I avoid stepping into Austenuations territory?) but Marianne's personality is vastly different from Lydia's. Marianne has far more gentle innocence and sincerity than Lydia.
One thing I always ponder over and think about when reading S&S is whether or not JA thought that showing one's feelings in a candid way is a good personality trait or whether JA preferred feelings to be guarded with self-control. For instance, JA seems to express that Marianne should control her strong emotions more and sometimes JA also seems to have more regard for Elinor's temperament, in part.
Do you think that JA disapproved of showing one's feelings with such abandon as Marianne?
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