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|This is one of my favorite JA phrases
Written by Louise H
(9/27/2009 11:30 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, That expectation of happiness which is happiness itself, penned by Barbara
My DH and I quote this phrase to each other often, because it is so true -- that looking forward to future happiness is itself a source of great happiness, one to be savored for itself. I think this is an insufficiently appreciated insight, beautifully phrased by JA.
I don't think JA is condemning happy expectation in any way, though it does indeed set people up (Marianne obviously) for a fall if their expectation is disappointed. I hadn't noticed how Elinor is contrasted with Marianne on this point, and shown to be sometimes too cautious or pessimistic to allow herself to expect -- and therefore enjoy -- happiness. I think this is an instance of Mrs. Dashwood being right about Elinor (for once).
Very interesting insight -- thank you!
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