Posted by Kathleen (Kaf) on July 20, 1997 at 11:33:05:
In reply to Frank Churchill and Edward Austen Knight posted by Kali on July 20, 1997 at 02:17:25
] Jane's own brother Edward was adopted by wealthy relatives under very positive circumstances - apparently, it was not uncommon for wealthy people with no heirs to legally adopt a son of poorer relations so as to keep the money in the family, and ease the burden of the less well-off family.
] I was wondering if perhaps her direct experience with Edward's situation prompted her to experiment with the moral issues involved. In creating Frank Churchill's "prodigal son" character, she could foil her own experience with Edward's example of "the good son."
] Does any one have any more information or other thoughts on the matter?
Isn't it interesting that there is not a single "good" parent in the entire book? Emma's father was far too hypochondriacal and self-absorbed to much of a parent, Frank's father dumped him on the Churchills, Jane's aunt left her with the Campbells, and Harriet was left for an indifferent education at a boarding house!