Posted by Constanza on June 16, 1998 at 09:31:35:
In response to also enlightened...but taking you up on Sir T., written by Bonny on June 14, 1998 at 22:55:45
] But Sir thomas...does he have the same principles as Fanny, I think she may have the ideal of the principles he purports to have, but doesn't really,(so that there's something ironic in Fanny's rising up and becoming the "moral centre" of MP),that he doesnt always have intent to match "the principles", in short I think Sir T. guilty of "appearances", as well as the more recognizable "villians." Sir T is guilty of not living up to the principles, or appearance, when
] - he holds the ball for Fanny and William, ostensibly to gratify William's wish of watching Fanny dance, actually to display Fanny as an eligible candidate on the marraige market to Mr Crawford, whose interest he has detected(isn't this what "coming out"
] - same ball - he sends Fanny to bed, with"the advice of absolute power')
] purportedly because of concern for her health, but the narrator makes us aware of a hidden intent that he might wish to show her persuadableness, and thus her value as a docile little wife to Mr C.
] Let me know what you think?
Very, very interesting! I have never viewed Sir Thomas' actions in that way till now; I think you may have a point here.
In fact, Sir Thomas is still somewhat of a puzzle for me. I sense there is something wrong with him that I cannot "pigeon-hole" (and it is part of the reason I said the "idea" was yet to be develop). His mistakes have ruined the life of three of his four children, which is a high percentage of them (75%!). So, why did he fail?
He has principles; he seems to know what is right and what is wrong; Edmund looks up to him as a reference and has a high regard for his opinion in "theoretic behaviour". So, the theory is there.
Now as to intent. If we can prove that he lacks it, or has this "quality" in a lesser degree, it would be great, because that would mean that "full intent"+"full principles" = "full goodness" (does it make sense?); that is, the higher you go in the intent scale, the better you are (provided you have your full range of principles). And of course, "substance" would necessarily entail "appearance".
Perhaps we should define "intent"; I have though of it as "a willingness to act according to one's principles". The problem is that Sir Thomas is, indeed, willing to act as a good parent, a good uncle, a good person. Even if he advertises Fanny's virtues as a prospective wife, I am sure he does it out of kindness. Perhaps I ought to think different of "intent" and substitute "ability" for willingness. Or add one to the other. So, he would be" willing", but not "able"; as you said, he would fail short and be guilty of appearances, which makes a whole great more sense that my far-fetched theory of "being good" and not looking it ( rather ridiculous from the POV of common sense). Then, which is Sir Thomas' fault? Perhaps it is his detachment and his indifference; he has a general overall intent to act good, but he does not take the trouble to take a look around him and see what is going on and what should be done.
Well, I 've rambled enough. Your post has set me thinking, but I'd better do some more actual thinking before going on, or I will end up by making a muddle of it all.
Hope you it makes sense. I am afraid I set to write it with a general idea but improvised and correct most of it as I was writing it. I don't know why, but things look always clearer when typed. :-)
- Lest we fall of the edge of the screen... gkb 18:41:18 6/16/98 (0)
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