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Written by Barbara
(2/4/2003 10:30 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, George Austen, the parson, penned by Caroline
] In other words, the Latitudinarians didn’t actually care what theological doctrine a person held, as long as they had one, and stuck to it. Belief, behaviour, tolerance of other ideas, and an acceptance of “differentness” all came from within the individual , who answered only to God for his actions.
]How did all this affect Jane, do you think? How much of her father’s circumstances can we see in her work? How much of his personality, his tastes and his prefences?
We've discussed before on this board whether Jane would have actually been allowed to read books she mentions such as Tom Jones and The Monk or Les Liaisons Dangereuses (which one bio. I read says she probably read or heard of from cousin Eliza de Feuillade and to which Lady Susan has such a strong resemblance).
Perhaps, considering this latitudinarian view of her father's he would not have objected so much as I might have thought. If the tolerance of other ideas is promoted, one would be less likely to censor or forbid reading materials? And, presumably, if one had a solid personal doctrine and held to it, then reading such things could not have a negative influence? This is speculation that I find endlessly fascinating!
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