Good post, Michele
Posted by Mark on December 12, 1997 at 13:56:10:
In response to Yes and No, written by MB on December 12, 1997 at 12:33:09
] ] Allister Cooke, who was hosting Masterpiece Theatre when P&P1 was first broadcast stated, "Pride and Prejudice is not a love novel. It is a parody of a love novel." I have often meditated upon what he meant by that.
] I think that P&P is a satire, a (Scribner's, again) "literary composition in which vice and folly are held up to ridicule, in which sarcasm and ridicule are used to expose vice and folly." Doesn't that seem more like the P&P we know and love? And, to my mind, satire is more subtle and gentle than is parody. I think Alistair was inhaling the residue of too many moldy books...
He may well of said it was "...a satire of a love novel." It was over twenty years ago, and until your post, I didn't appreciate fully the difference between parody and satire. So my memory may well be faulty.
] ] Consider that the book revolves around one Miss Elizabeth Bennet. So, why is it that in this book supposedly about love, do we not know when she fell in love? We simply are not told.
] Exactly! It's gradual, just as if it were happening to us. We follow the story along with Elizabeth. That's why it's so brilliant, IMO. Don't you think that this is how most of us fall in love, or at least realize that we have fallen in love? I'm not talking about the lightening-bolt of attraction or infatuation, but true long-lasting respect, affection, and passion.
Yes, but you still reach a point where you say, "Hey, I'm here! How did I get here?" I never see this in Lizzy.
] I think it is both a love story AND a brilliant satire of manners and society. It's a love story in the same way that, say, Howard's End is a love story. Or that Gulliver's Travels is an adventure story. Or that Alice in Wonderland is a children's fantasy story. You can read it for plot and dialogue alone and enjoy it, love it even. But if you read between the lines, there is so much more. Treating it as either one or the other would be incomplete.
You are so right! P&P transcends all the standard labels. It is sometimes fun to watch learned academic types try to pigeon hole it. They just never can't quite do it, no matter how hard they try. Jane Austen is just too smart for them.
GO AUNT JANE!!
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