A sanguine temper
Posted by Arnessa on August 18, 1998 at 18:47:54:
In response to Do you think that JA was a little in love with Willoughby herself?, written by Barbara on August 18, 1998 at 15:21:46
] While looking around online for some things to add to my Literary Companion page, I came across this article: Introduction to Sense and Sensibility
] by Reginald Brimley Johnson
] Published by J. M. Dent & Sons, 1922
] It talks about all of JA's novels actually, but several times Johnson makes statements that make it seem as though JA favoured Willoughy above all her other so-called villains. For example:
] --He writes:
]Though she had a strong natural distaste for pictures of guilt and misery, she has drawn us some villains who
] wear sheep's clothing for a considerable period, and seriously interfere with the course of true love. Wickham
] belongs to a somewhat commonplace type, being cool, selfish, and calculating, pleasing in his address and a
] skilful liar. Willoughby's unaffected sensibility is a more original conception, which is well sustained.
] Do you think that JA could have written such a character as Willoughby (and a character who can inspire endless debate!) without being a little in love with him herself? Her contempt for characters she does NOT like is always evident...
Well, you know what I'm going to say. I think she did have a liking for Willoughby, and I think she means for us to like him too - even though we aren't supposed to see him as a fitting husband for Marianne. I wonder even if Willoughby is modeled in some measure on Tom Lefroy, if we are to believe that Lefroy "betrayed" JA because she was poor. I think JA had too sanguine a temper to "dwell on guilt and misery" and it's certainly possible that she dealt with this loss in her own mind by giving her Marianne the safety and comfort of a Brandon to look forward to - even if she could not bring herself to completely condemn the actions of a first, ardent yet faithless suitor. It's hard for a person to completely condemn a first love even after the worst treatment, in my opinion.
There, enough of my psychobabble.
- Mmmm. Very interesting Arnessa. (nfm) caitlin 12:38:43 8/19/98 (0)
- Ohhh! Great "psychobabble"!(nfm) ;-) Stephanie S 12:26:00 8/19/98 (0)
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