Sunday, 28 September 2008

Jane Austen Quote- Week Twenty-Three

Many people criticised Becoming Jane for creating a story which represented the real life of Jane Austen, yet used constant reference to her novels; either through dialogue or real characters which were purported to be the foundations for the later fictional characters from her novels. This allowed people to propose that the film makers were suggesting that Jane was not as 'creative' as her true followers believe her to be.

I did not feel this way atall. I think that the film makers allowed a wider audience to be introduced to the world of Jane Austen which includes her novels. Many non-literary followers still know the story of Pride and Prejudice and by including some quotes from the novel in the film dialogue, it allowed links to be noticed by the audience and consequently, I believe, more enjoyment to be felt.

Furthermore, the other ladies on this blog and I have had many discussions about the fact that there MUST have been elements of Jane's personal life and experiences depicted in her novels. It is only natural. She writes with such awareness and this would not be possible unless she had been subjected to similar environments and circumstances in her real life.

Anyway, enough waffling. The quote I have chosen this week is a quote from the wonderful novel Northanger Abbey but was also included in the film Becoming Jane.

In the novel, it appears at the end of Chapter 5 when Jane uses the description of the friendship between Catherine and Isabella to declare her strong views on the use and respect of the 'novel' in everyday life. I think it is a clear representation of Jane at her best.

In the film, Jane uses this quote in a clever verbal attack towards Tom Lefroy when they meet in Selbourne Wood and he manages to deliver the common misconception of what was believed to be just a novel.

"Only a novel"... in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour are conveyed to the world in the best chosen language."

I hope you enjoy.

Pic 1: Jane Austen from Wikimedia Commons

Pic 2: BBC website


Anonymous said...

Indeed Jane at her best “most thorough knowledge of human nature” and “the liveliest effusions of wit and humour”… and the Selbourne Wood scene in the movie is one of my favorites

Tom: “Was I deficient in rapture?”
Jane: “In consciousness.”
Tom: “It was… It was accomplished.”
Jane: “It was ironic.”

I exceedingly enjoyed it :-D


Icha said...

Enjoy?! My dearest Rachel... you stirred the beautiful dormant memories from my mind... and I long to place the BJ DVD again now to watch! Alas, I have some deadlines to catch... but I will asap! Thanks for the lovely quote!

Mariana, indeed you're correct. You also stirred those memories, dearest, and I do have to reiterate that Jane/Tom (Anne/James) verbal banters are so thick with chemistry. Particularly the forest and the library scenes... aaahhhh!!!

mamma jakeline said...

Oh I am in serious need of rewatching BJ asap!!! ;) But first P&P is on the schedule. It has been too long, and since I'm working on a P&P fanfic alongside with IRL I need to rewatch them both. ;)

Gaah now I have less than a month left as a "single" woman... Getting a bit nervous to tell the truth.

/ hugs and kisses from Maria and Peanut

Anonymous said...

Exactly so! And that is exactly what Jane did in her novels. This idea can be found in her brother's periodical "The Loiterer" in No. 9 where he writes that he will accomodate the fair sex this way: "we shall carefully select such subjects as may captivate the imagination, without offending the judgment, and interest the feelings, without misleading the heart."

Jane followed that advice as depicted in your quote! I am unanimous in that!

Thanks for the quote, so much is in those books that it staggers the mind.

Linda the Librarian