The act of reading ... begins on a flat surface, counter or page, and then gets stirred and chopped and blended until what we make, in the end, is a dish, or story, all our own.
— Adam Gopnik

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February 17, 2017

A year with our Jane: modern enough

      Elinor's uneasiness was at least equal to her mother's. She thought of what had just passed with anxiety and distrust. Willoughby's behavior in taking leave of them, his embarrassment and affectation of cheerfulness ... a backwardness so unlike a lover, so unlike himself, greatly disturbed her. ...
      But whatever might be the particulars of their separation, her sister's affliction was indubitable; and she thought with all the tenderest compassion of that violent sorrow which Marianne was in all probability not merely giving away to as a relief, but feeding and encouraging as a duty.
from Sense and Sensibility

This is the scene when Mrs Dashwood, Elinor, and Margaret have come back from church, expecting that Willoughby has finally proposed {the one below comes when Edward leaves Barton Cottage without declaring himself}, and the idea of Marianne augmenting and fixing made me smile. But it also reminded me how perceptive Jane Austen was about people, even when she was seeing the humor in them. I was also thinking about the rhose recent and mostly disappointing retellings of her novels that came out in the last few years, and that we didn't really need to modernize her.  Though I'd hope to be more like Elinor, I definitely know people like Marianne! :)

      'I think,' replied Edward, 'that I may defy many months to produce any good to me.'
      This desponding turn of mind ... left an uncomfortable impression on Elinor's feelings especially, which required some trouble and time to subdue. But as it was her determination to subdue it, and to prevent herself from appearing to suffer more than what all her family suffered on his going away, she did not adopt the method so judiciously employed by Marianne ... to augment and fix her sorrow, by seeking silence, solitude, and idleness. Their means were as different as their objects, and equally suited to the advancement of each.

1 comment:

JoAnn said...

I'm not usually one for modern adaptations, but did enjoy The Three Weissmann's of Westport. Eligible (the new P&P retelling) was a kindle daily deal a couple of months ago and I 'purchased with 1-click'. Maybe I'll even read it one of these days! ;-)

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