Posted by Kathy F. on July 07, 1997 at 09:14:30:
In reply to Re: Emma- Kathy, let's discuss! posted by Lesley on July 07, 1997 at 02:10:26
] I think Emma starts matchmaking for Harriet as a lark, as something ot fill her time. It is as if she is using Harriet as sexual bait to lure Mr. Elton. After carefully reading the book, I think Emma is mainly sorry for befriending Harriet because she is afraid Harriet will marry Mr. Knightley! I think it is very easy to miss this bc JA ties up Harriet's fate very nicely by having Mr. Knightley encourage robert Martin to propose again in London, away from Emma's influence.
] I don't think that Emma does this maliciously to try to ruin Harriet's life but I certainly think that it was a near miss for Harriet and Mr. Martin!
Yes. Emma did not regret her friendship until Harriet threatened to take Mr. Knightley away. But I think there is a little regret on Emma's part without regards to Mr. Knightley. It also involves regret towards JF. Emma raised HS above her station, by convincing herself and HS that she was the daughter of a gentleman; all the while considering JF to be beneath her regard, more or less (We are informed that it is because JF is a truly accomplished person, and Emma would merely like to be thought of as one.). Emma could not and would not stay by herself with Miss Taylor gone, so she latched on to HS (pretending to educate her mind, etc., but that was not the main point). I think that if Emma had not been wrong to start with, JA wouldn't have "punished" her, in the form of HS being the one to threaten Mr. Knightley and Emma's relationship.