I totally agree (nfm)
Posted by Sherry on October 17, 1997 at 07:29:32:
In response to dialogue in life and novels, written by Susie on October 16, 1997 at 19:21:34
] ] I'm not talking about sappy or stupid dialogue, I'm talking about people talking in ways they would NEVER talk in real life. I know to an extent Austen has unrealistic dialogue too, but Bronte's dialogue is for me far too studied, they vocabulary far to complex, the metaphors far too intricate - people never actually talk like that. In this respect, as in many others, JE seems to me to fall more into the category of fantasy.
] Of course one doesn't talk like that in real life (although I imagine educated Victorians used a far more elaborate vocabulary and more formal modes of speech than we would nowadays. It is a novel, basically a lot of printed words on paper, and all the nuances of context, colour, space, form, time, emotion etc that are around us in real life when we speak to another person, and which influence our perception and understanding of what they say, do not exist except through the selection and arrangement of those words. Just how much of that contextual information the author wants to give or withhold depends on the sort of picture they want to convey. Bronte seems to me to be going for a very vivid style rather like some 19th century painting; realistic and detailed but with immensely romantic subject matter. All a question of taste whether one likes it or not; I think in JE she does what she does extremely well, and I have thoroughly enjoyed rereading it.
] At the other extreme I have just been reading Mike Leigh's play Abigail's Party and wondering how on earth he manages to convey so much about the personalities, emotions and relationships of the characters through such seemingly banal empty dialogue. Another great artist but completely different style (nearer to Jane Austen perhaps?)
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