V5 Alquin Romanticism 68-79 Jane Austen

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Slide 1: Tekstslide
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In deze les zitten 28 slides, met interactieve quizzen, tekstslides en 4 videos.

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Slide 1 - Tekstslide

Early 19th Century Novel
Jane Austen (1775 - 1817)
  • Most important novelist of early 19th century
  • Elegant + witty studies of young women
  • Focusing on love and common sense

Most important novels:
  • Sense and Sensibilty / Emma /  Persuasion 
  • Pride and Prejudice

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  • Born in Steventon, daughter of an Anglican priest
  • Good education (not customary for girls)
  • Happy childhood, reading was encouraged  
  • Started writing when she was 15
  • Never married, isolated from other authors, dependent on her parents.
  • Died at age 41, possibly due to tuberculosis. 
  • Wrote about the game of courtship. 
  • Her novels were not very successful at that time. 

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Slide 4 - Video

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Early 19th Century England
  •  Small group of aristocrats were in power.
  • Women could not work, only exception: governess. 
  • Only men could inherit land. 
  • Gentry and aristocracy 'earned' their income through inheritance and rent from their tenants.
  • Lots of parties.

Slide 6 - Tekstslide

Pride and Prejudice
  • Most of Austen's novels do not focus on or even mention awfu events as protests, wars and revolutions. 
  • Austen's novels were published anonymously (women usually didn't write books).
  • Novel of manners.

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Slide 8 - Video

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Slide 11 - Video

Three love affairs are played out simultaneously in this novel: Who are the loving couples?

Slide 12 - Sleepvraag

Which few traits do you think best describe the following characters?
Mr Collins
Lady Catherine de Bourgh
 Mrs Bennet
vain, hypocrite, snob
meddlesome, arrogant, a schemer 
 flirt, man-chaser 
foolish, fickle, ill-informed

Slide 13 - Sleepvraag


Answer the questions on Austen's Pride & Prejudice.
Make sure to check all of your answers (also from the previous texts/lessons) before Wednesday.
Let me know if you have any questions. 

Slide 14 - Tekstslide

Assignments on Austen’s Pride and Prejudice
1 A. Explain the title of the novel. 
  •  The title relates to the novel’s two main characters, Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam Darcy. 
  • Pride refers to Darcy, who considers it a problem to marry beneath his own rank. 
  • Prejudice refers to Elizabeth, who ascribes various traits to Darcy – even though she barely knows him – which later prove unfounded

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B. Might it also be interpreted differently? Explain.
  • One might also interpret it the other way round: Elizabeth’s pride is hurt when Darcy admits that he would like to marry her, but that she is below his station. And Darcy is prejudiced in his view of the Bennets and Elizabeth, which prevents him from following his heart

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2. One of the principal themes of this novel is that ‘appearances can be deceptive’. Give 2 examples (characters) that explain what this means.
  • Wickham, Darcy and perhaps Collins and Lady Catherine de Bourgh are the most evident: Wickham proves to be an unscrupulous profiteer and gossip, while Darcy is not really an oaf, but rather a man with his heart in the right place.
  • While Collins pretends to be noble and unselfish, he is actually a money grubber (excerpt 1).
  • Lady de Bourgh purports to be well-versed in good manners and etiquette, but sweeps these swiftly aside if things do not go her way. 

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3b + 3c Which two loving couples remain very much dependent on the third couple? Why?
  • Jane & Bingham and Lydia & Wickham are dependent on Elizabeth and Darcy's relationship.
  • As long as Elizabeth and Darcy’s relationship remains uncertain, then those of the other two couples also hang in the balance

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4. The main characters  are neither described nor display their own natures by means of their actions, but are revealed in conversations and dialogue. What is the advantage of adopting this approach?
  • The reader really gets to know the characters well in this way, as all their thoughts, feelings and utterances can be closely followed.
  • The drawback to this approach, however, is that the story lacks pace and action, which quickly puts some readers off

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5. Elizabeth gradually develops. At what point does she prove to have grown into a strong, independent woman, who is capable of withstanding considerable external burdens?
  • At the end of the story, when she proves capable of standing her ground in the confrontation with the omnipotent Lady de Bourgh

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6. Which aspects of the 2 eldest sisters’ characters differ the most? 
  • Elizabeth is much more enterprising and outspoken. Furthermore, she often ridicules the stubborn habits of those around her. She does not take her mother too seriously – a sentiment she shares with her father. 
  • Jane, in stark contrast, is a rather colourless character. She is passive and afraid to do anything on her own

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8. Can you explain why Jane Austen’s novels were not very popular among her contemporaries?
  • Due to her rationalism and the fact that the novels are set in the late 18 century. Romanticism had already taken over from the Enlightenment, in much the same way as new styles continue to do to this very day: new movements or trends tend to rebel against those of the preceding period

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9. In what regard might one view Jane Austen’s novels as the precursors to the contemporary novel? 
  • Jane Austen’s novels already featured main characters with clear psychological depth; which comprise characteristics that that a reader can identify with. 
  • Each of the novels contains a clear main plot and several subplots. One or more topics are discussed during the course of the story. 
  • In terms of structure, Jane Austen was clearly already applying a method in her novels: She commences by introducing the main characters to us, then proceeds to build (rising action) the story (plot and subplots) to end in a climax.

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10. A.  why is the way in which Collins proposes so disgusting.
  • He has a clear image of a wife in mind, which he thinks any right-minded girl would surely consider acceptable: First and foremost, she should keep her opinions to herself; though she should also be a useful, and acceptable to Lady de Bourgh. 
  • He proceeds to tell her that she is privileged to receive his proposal, as he could have his choice of marriageable ladies. 
  • He then points out how pitiful she is: Having very little money since the death of her parents. 
  • And finally, he refuses to take her refusal seriously. 

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11a What makes Darcy’s proposal so tactless?
  • His proposal is tactless in that he shows no form of tenderness whatsoever, but does refer to her ‘sense of inferiority’; proceeding to use terms like ‘degradation’ and ‘family obstacles’.

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11B. Compare the different ways in which Elizabeth replies to the proposals by Collins and Darcy.
  • Elizabeth does not take Collins seriously and swats him away like a bothersome horsefly, while she sets fire to Darcy’s words in a rage. She is deeply insulted and humiliated.

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11C. Elizabeth admits that ‘she could not be insensible to the compliment of such a man’s affection’. What is meant by ‘such a man’?
  • An alluring, high-born man.

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11D. Darcy is astounded at having been turned down by Elizabeth. Why?
  • He is cut to the bone by Elizabeth’s sharp words, while he does not feel that the remarks ‘ungentleman-like manner’, ‘arrogance’, ‘conceit’ and ‘selfish disdain ....’ could possibly apply to him. The final blow, however, is Elizabeth’s remark: ‘last man in the world to marry’.

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