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|GR: Mrs. Dashwood grows up
Written by Barbara
(9/17/2003 1:07 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, GR: Mrs Dashwood, penned by Ingrid Linnéa
] The result of these reflections is that she too matures a bit - not one day too early IMO. Elinor certainly has had to be the parent in this family. She is only nineteen, yet she has had to carry her burden all alone.
Yes, I believe that Mrs. Dashwood, too, has learned and grown from this experience. However, I have to ask whether it is not, perhaps, too late for her to really be the mother that Elinor ought to have had. By the time Mrs. D. has this all figured out, it is only a very short while thereafter that Edward proposes and they are married and off to Delaford.
However, maybe things would not have worked out so well, either. Had she been more aware of Elinor's suffering and figured out the cause of it, maybe Mrs. Dashwood would have been as angry at Edward as she was at Willoughby. Maybe there would have been no trip to London for the girls in that case, and maybe Lucy and Nancy wouldn't have gotten themselves into the situation of revealing the engagement. So many things on which to speculate!
Another interesting speculation is that at the beginning of the story we were told that Margaret had imbibed a great deal of Marianne's romantic notions, but without her sense and did not 'bid fair' to turn out as well. Now that Margaret, at the end of the novel, is not very ineligible to be supposed to have lovers of her own, perhaps her mother will do a better job of guiding her and walking a line between the way she dealt with the two older sisters.
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