Emma, By Jane Austen

1327 Words6 Pages
In Jane Austen’s “Emma,” conversations reveal the social concerns and the character of its participants. Each contributor has a unique and therefore biased perspective that informs how they appear in a conversation. The eponymous protagonist, Emma is oft seen making judgments whether in dialogue or through free indirect discourse, such that her own shortcomings and biases are elucidated. Emma willing enters into a disagreement with her step-brother, Mr. Knightley, on the elusive Frank Churchill. She admittedly plays devil’s advocate as a source of amusement. Despite taking on a perspective she feels she doesn’t really have, Emma, reveals her values and Mr. Knightley reveals his. The conversation later proves the catalyst for which Emma and…show more content…
The circularity of her thought signals a dreamy, admiring tone such as is employed when someone has an elementary crush on another person. Despite taking on an opinion contrary to her own, Emma still proves to be too impressed with Frank.
On the other hand, Mr. Knightley is dubious of the man Emma describes with certainty as being agreeable to everybody. It is quite questionable for a man to be the young age of three-and-twenty and attain repute as the “king of his company” or “the practiced politician” (119). Knightley holds that someone like whom Emma has described has ulterior motives for wanting to be so well-learned on a diversity of subjects. Instead of actually being invested in the different subjects and individuals, this Frank would actually “read every body’s character and make every body’s talents conduce to the display of his own superiority” (119); that is to say, he would be seeking to assert his superiority over others. Despite being qualified as said warmly, the punctuation and the diction of his response itself juxtapose the composed associations of a warm manner. His perspective is not unreasonable, but it also is wrought with emotion, suggesting at it being important. The exclamation points at the ends of almost each clause and the dashes are emphatic and caustic; he is trying to make sense of Emma’s understanding of such an arrogant-seeming figure as agreeable and does so mockingly. These oppositional takes on one

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