Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formattingExcerpt from essay:
Monetary wealth is intimately aligned with social standing and when the Eliot's run into financial difficulties as result of pretentious living standards, this has profound implications for the plot and main characters.
Power is also another factor that plays a role in the desire for social status. In this novel Austen explores the ways in which power over others is related to class and wealth. We have already seen how the power associated with class and social hierarchy has succeeded in changing the direction of Anne's life through the persuasion of Lady Russell. An interesting aspect of the novel is that Austen also examines the shifting and changing patterns of power in the society at that time. As a result of the Napoleonic Wars, a division has arisen in English society between the old aristocracy and the new middle classes, represented by the individual entrepreneur. This can be seen in the way that power shifts in the novel between the Eliot and Wentworth families. (Persuasion by Jane Austen: In a Nutshell)
2.2. Women in society
Another factor that is important and which is related to the above themes in the novel is the position of women in society. Austen, in portraying the main female character in contrast to the other characters, attempt to show how women have to contend with a society dominated by male ideas of hierarchy and status, while at the same time attempting to find their own sense of identity and self-worth. Central to the problems that Anne Eliot faces is that women in the society have to live within rigid class distinctions. This is the reason why she is persuaded not to marry Wentworth and the reason for her wasting twenty -- seven years of her life as a spinster.
This refers to the fact that women in English society during this period had no option but marriage. Furthermore, it was required that a women 'marry well' if she was to advance in society and overcome status barriers. In this light Anne can be forgiven for being persuaded by Lady Russell not to marry beneath her status, or at least her action can be better understood.
From a feminist point-of-view women were subject to both the class prejudice as well as to sexual and gender biases and restrictions. Jane Austen was aware of this double yoke under which women lived and her novels are an attempt to reveal and expose the situation of women in the society of the time.
2.3. Independence and identity.
Closely linked to the above themes is the theme of independence, the ability to make up one's own mind and the questioning of those who would persuade or influence one. This also refers to the theme of self-knowledge and identity. As the novel progresses, Anne as well Frederick Wentworth learn that one should not be forced or persuaded into believing what other would like you to believe. As one commentator notes; "The novel asks whether it is better to be firm in one's convictions or to be open to the suggestions of others." (Persuasion: Jane Austen: Themes, Motifs, and Symbols)
However, the forces and influence of societal norms and views about status and class are shown to be extremely powerful. Even years after she broke off her engagement Anne still believes that she was acting out of a sense of social duty. This implies that she was not only persuaded by Lady Russell bur also by her own acceptance of some aspects of the social system. She says the following to Wentworth later in the novel: "When I yielded, I thought it was to duty…" ( Austen: Persuasion: Chapter 23) While Anne learns and becomes more aware of herself as an individual and not bound by the strictures of society, it can also be argued that the novel leaves us with the question or the possibility that she is not entirely free from the pretensions and machinations of society.
Jane Austen's Persuasion is a love story that is also a narrative that explores the issues of society, class and the search for self-knowledge and identity in a conformist environment. Anne learns from her mistakes in the process of becoming more aware and independent as a person. This also applies to Captain Wentworth to a certain degree. The novel therefore is not only a critique of society but an exploration of human awakening and awareness to the possibilities of life. Taking these two central these into account -- the critique of society and the search for self-knowledge, independence and truth - it becomes clear that while this novel was written in the 19th century it still has much to interest us today. The problem that the main character encounters refers to issues that women and men still experience in contemporary society.
Austen J. Persuasion. Chapter 23. April 12, 2009.
Perkins W. Persuasion: Criticism. April 12, 2009.
Persuasion by Jane Austen. April 12, 2009. < http://www.austen.com/persuade/>
Persuasion by Jane Austen: In a Nutshell. April 12, 2009.
Persuasion: JANE AUSTEN: Themes, Motifs, and Symbols. April 12, 2009.
Persuasion Study Guide. April 12, 2009.
Persuasion: Themes. April 12, 2009. < http://www.answers.com/topic/persuasion-novel-3>[continue]
"Persuasion By Jane Austen Persuasion" (2009, April 14) Retrieved November 29, 2016, from http://www.paperdue.com/essay/persuasion-by-jane-austen-22973
"Persuasion By Jane Austen Persuasion" 14 April 2009. Web.29 November. 2016. <http://www.paperdue.com/essay/persuasion-by-jane-austen-22973>
"Persuasion By Jane Austen Persuasion", 14 April 2009, Accessed.29 November. 2016, http://www.paperdue.com/essay/persuasion-by-jane-austen-22973
She has spent the last ten years in sadness and solitude, even in her own family. She could have had ten years of happiness and contentment had it not been for Lady Russell, who finally acknowledges she made a grave mistake when she gave Anne advice about the man. Late in the novel Austen writes, "There was nothing less for Lady Russell to do, than to admit that she
Jane Austen's Persuasion: Anne Elliot's Coming Out The writings of Jane Austen are often considered to be the representation of an excessively conservative era. Though this may truly be the case especially in regards to the formal and informal interactions between the opposite genders. A woman's reputation could be made or broken by a simple turn of events. The challenge of maintaining these standards for conduct, where even the minutest
Jane Austen's Emma Jane Austen's Gentleman Ideal in Emma In her third novel, Jane Austen created a flawed but sympathetic heroine in the young Emma Woodhouse. Widely considered her finest work, Austen's Emma once again deals with social mores, particularly those dealing with ethical actions and social status. This paper focuses on how Austen uses the figure of George Knightley to propose a new English Gentleman Ideal to criticize the strictures regarding the
Emma: The Character of Frank Churchill and 'reading' the moral qualities of men in Jane Austen One of the challenges posed by Jane Austen, of her heroine Emma Woodhouse, in the novel entitled Emma, is how Emma must learn to be a good reader of both male and female characters. The persona of Frank Churchill poses a constant series of challenges to Emma -- is Frank a rouge and a coxcomb,
This is a fact that Austen herself most certainly appreciated as an unmarried female of the same social set she was writing about, which explains the centrality of this concept to so many of her novels. Persuasion is far from the only Austen novel where conflicts between emotional love and the necessary practical considerations of marriage arise, nor the only one where ironic changes in circumstance lead to the
Feminist Reading of Austen's Persuasion "I Will Not Allow Books to Prove Anything": Women Reading and Women Writing in Austen's Persuasion Feminist criticism is equally concerned with female authorship and with female readership and in the case of Jane Austen, both issues must be addressed. Frantz in 2009 noted that on one level Austen's influence on female readership has been immense: she claims that "readers and authors of contemporary romance claim Jane Austen
Other novels of the time, such as "The Swiss Family Robinson" and "The Dairyman's Daughter," were moralistic Christian tales, and novels of fear and terror were also becoming popular, such as "Tales of the Dead" and tales of Dracula-like beings. Thus, Austen was bucking tradition with her novel, combining wit, romance, and satire against the very society that was reading it. Her novel was exceedingly popular at the time,