Posted by MB on October 30, 1997 at 12:51:48:
In response to What was Willoughby?, written by Mark on October 27, 1997 at 16:18:53
] You know, it is interesting. I have always maintained that Marianne was happier with Brandon, but I have been a bit disturbed by some of the "Willoughby is a Cad", "Willoughby is selfish", etc.; posts that I have been seeing.
] Was Willy all that bad? Was he selfish? As neat as those pigeon holes sound, I don't think they quite fit him.
] I guess I've always looked at him as a "moral coward". He knows good principles, he wants to live good principles. But when the crunch comes, he can't live up to them. That is why he confesses to Elinor. He wants to be a good man, but he can never quite do it.
] I guess that is why I can't quite condemn him. He tries to do what is right, but he fails. To coin a phrase, the road to Hell is paved with good intentions, and he seems to be having a very smooth trip.
] What are your thoughts?
] P.S. I still say Marianne won with Brandon.
Ah yes, but did Brandon win with Marianne? ;-)
I tend to agree with you about Willoughby. To me, he is the most complex of all JA's "anti-heroes" and is, as such, the most believable. He seems to have more of a conscience and less of a willingness to justify all of his mistakes than Wickham, Mr. Elliot, or Frank Churchill.
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