Jane Austen 's Emma And Clueless Comparison

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Alex Escribano Professor Klingensmith 4 April 2016 ENGL Emma and Clueless Comparison Jane Austen’s Emma can be categorized as a bildungsroman, better known as a coming-of-age tale, in which the reader follows the title character as she comes to terms with her position in the world during the Regency period. However, looking beyond the titular character, one can look at Emma as a satirical work regarding the restrictions and conventions of 19th century society. This satirical element later went on to inspire Heckerling’s interpretation as she adapted the story of Emma into the cult film, Clueless, which goes on to highlight the phenomena of cliques amongst the youth of America. Both works use the element of exaggeration in order to explore the gender stereotypes and expectations placed upon society during their respective eras. Heckerling effectively takes the novel Emma and thrusts it into the world of Beverly Hills, keeping the underlying themes while engaging a more modern audience. Emma Woodhouse was the first heroine in Jane Austen’s novels to be free from financial concerns. She is introduced to the reader as being, “handsome, clever, and rich” as well as having “the power of having rather too much of her own way and disposition to think too well of herself” (Austen 1). Despite this description of a spoiled young woman who too often gets her way, she is not taken by personal vanity and is often genuinely compassionate to the poor. Despite being an exception to the

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