Posted by Margaret on May 01, 1997 at 21:35:03:
In reply to Re: Fanny posted by Claire on April 30, 1997 at 00:16:09
This is the second time I have read Mansfield Park, so please do not attack me too severely. ;-) I have some (perhaps unanswerable) questions and some comments:
Why is it called Mansfield Park and not "Fanny" or at least not entitled something which relates directly to Fanny? After all, it is Pride and Prejudice, not "Longbourn"---in each of her other novels (excepting Northanger Abbey, which is not a standard JA novel), the title of the book directly relates to the heroine. Is it supposed to in this case? Is MP about Fanny or is it about Mansfield Park as seen with the vision of an incorruptible innocent? Is this the story of an indominatible character who endures abuse and deprivation, yet remains unchanged by it ( a story of triumph) or is it the story of a character who is too weak-willed to do anything but observe others enjoying life (a story of resignation)? (I know, I know---the Fanny wars)
I have enjoyed reading MP, yet except for JA's touches of irony and fine-tuned descriptions of characters, I would liken this to one of Louisa M. Alcott's books---perhaps An Old Fashioned Girl or Rose in Bloom. In the end, it seems too moralizing, Fanny seems too good to be true, and the marriage of Edmund and Fanny seems too lacking in sexual joy. Altogether, it seems an idea stretched too far, too fine. I'm rambling, but suffice it to say that I found little comfort or satisfaction in the conclusion.
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