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Written by Anselm
(9/9/2009 5:18 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Likeability, penned by Robbin
why is John introduced the way he is? Near the beginning of Ch.1 we are in the middle of a bunch of purely economic and familial detail, when John is introduced - not by name - as "a steady, respectable young man". This phrase has always jumped out at me a bit. Why does JA go out of her way to sketch his character here, when the business under discussion is so....well, so businesslike? And why a "steady, respectable" man, when even by the end of his chapter (let alone the following one) he's revealed as the most disgusting form of primeval sludge?
"Respectable" I could just understand, in terms of the way he is viewed by society, although that's actually stretching it a bit (his "respectability" depends in part on his own actions). But "steady" surely refers to an innate quality of his? Surely his conduct in Chs 1 and 2 shows the very opposite of steadiness? What's JA playing at here?
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