I agree...I don't buy his confession either (NFM)
Posted by BarbaraW on December 17, 1997 at 13:42:46:
In response to Contrary to that contrary opinion..., written by Kelley on December 17, 1997 at 12:09:44
] ] I put little credence on his proclamations to Elinor Dashwood later on in the novel.
] ] Willoughby means and feels exactly what he says to Elinor.
] ] If he did not , what would be the purpose for Jane Austen to have written in. What? Just another callous jab at the Dashwoods?
] I have to agree with Carl here. While I could possibly buy the fact that there was some real emotion behind the proposal, I really feel that there was another and darker motive behind Willoughby's confession. Because he was the type of person that needed others' constant approval, he couldn't bear to have other people think ill of him. Marianne's death would create feelings of animosity towards him amongst her family members, an unbearable idea for his vanity. Hence, his confession to Elinor.
] In that scene, Willoughby is desperate to make himself less disreputable in the Dashwoods' eyes. He repeatedly and anxiously asks Elinor if she feels more kindly inclined towards him. He even begins the confession with: "I mean, if I can, to make you hate me one degree less than you do now." I think the confession did serve as an absolution, not for his soul, but instead, for his vanity. This is only my very, very humble opinion, so, please, feel free to disagree. don't blast my head off...please...i need it for finals... ;)
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