Jane Austen

June 10, 2014 at 8:44 am

There’s no doubt that Jane Austen has inspired me although I freely admit that I do prefer the Brontes’ work to hers. Jane’s writing errs a little too much on the side of ‘telling’ rather than ‘showing’ for me to be supreme fan, although there’s no doubt she had an amazing grasp on not only communication through the written word, but also the social constructs of her time. Her understanding of behaviour in polite society and just what went on under the surface of all this careful use of manners is fascinating. I can only imagine what it would be like to live in a society where such politeness was expected and the suppression of passion and freedom to express yourself was equally demanded. I don’t think I would have been able to live within its confines. I think I would have been most like Marianne Dashwood, although I hope I might have been as self-controlled as Lizzie Bennet. If I’d had a daughter Elizabeth might have ended up being her name, and it would have been owing to the marvellous heroine of Pride and Prejudice. I am also proud of the fact that my maiden name is Bennett, although with two ‘t’s rather than one. Still, it has always made me feel a sense of kinship with Lizzie, although she would have bested me for self-control easily.

I love Jane for giving her to me, along with many other fascinating and intricate characters.

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