Posted by Kate on April 30, 1997 at 23:38:03:
In reply to Re: Ordination posted by Ann on April 30, 1997 at 23:27:05
] ] Mary and Edmund have several disputes over whether he should be ordained, starting in the chapel at Sotherton.
] But that hardly seems to be what the book is about.
My new copy of this, bought for the purposes of this discussion ( ;-) ) has a bit about this in the introduction. I quote:
"The legend that ordination is somehow central to the issue needs disposing of first. In one of his rare mistakes, Austen's great editor R.W. chapman pronounced that Austen had said MP was 'about' ordination. Hugh Brogan, Mary Lascelles, and others established in the Times Literary Supplement in 1968 that Chapman was imposing too much particular a meaning on the Austen letter in which the statement allegedly occurs. It is as well to get this straight, for 'themes' such as ordination and all the rest of the Evangelical menu are at best marginal to the novel, kept so by their implications for the boys' lives rather than the girls'. "
There is also a long footnote explaining exactly how Chapman mucked it up. I will post it if anyone is desperately interested.
The intro from which the above is quoted is by Marilyn Butler, the World's Classics edition.
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