Brandon's Guilt and the Austen Men
Posted by Linda K. on April 21, 1998 at 22:57:39:
In response to Brandon's testimony, written by Mary Anne on April 21, 1998 at 22:35:31
] Re: Brandon being biased. True enough, but even he acknowledges, in both novel and film, that Eliza/Beth is not a complete angel. I'd have to look up the exact text, but I believe that one point in the novel he refers to her as "headstrong" (and perhaps in the film as well)--and then there is the film's heartbreaking "God forgive me, I indulged her too much . . ." (Generously shouldering a great deal of the blame himself.) Brandon does take into account that she has been one of the causes of her own trouble. However, Willoughby's behaviour to her, while it can perhaps be understood, cannot be condoned.
Yes, I agree with you that Brandon is a gentleman's gentleman. He is a man of honour and always does the right thing. His first thought is of others' well-being, and he is truly selfless to blame himself for the result of Willoughby's indiscretions. I agree with you also that Willoughby's treatment of Eliza/Beth cannot be condoned, however I do understand it as you state above. I just have a hard time viewing him as the most vilainous Austen character because at least his feelings for Marianne were genuine unlike Wickham's feelings toward Lizzy, or Miss Grey, or Lydia, or Georgianna, etc., etc., etc. And how true were Frank Churchill's sentiments toward Emma? Had she returned his "supposed" affection, his secret engagment to Jane could have been quite a scandle. And we know that Henry Crawford had only "lusty" feelings for Maria Bertram. Which one of these above mention "gentleman" might very possibly have an illegitamate child lurking about as does our fictional Willoughby? ;-p
- Agreed, in part . . . Mary Anne 08:34:34 4/22/98 (3)
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