Margie's Reviews > Emma

Emma by Jane Austen
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's review
Apr 16, 2008

liked it
bookshelves: classics, austen, u-k

I've read Emma more often than any of Austen's other books. I've also seen more movie versions, and re-watched them, more often than the others. Like Lizzie Bennet, I prefer the film versions of the character to the one Austen wrote about.

On the GoodReads page for Pride & Prejudice there's a discussion about P&P being an obscene book due to the focus on landed gentry and complete absence of working-class people. I found Emma to be far more obscene on that count. Emma is constantly harping on how she's so superior to various people. I recognize that Austen is doing it specifically to call attention to how stupid the class consciousness is, but having the "heroine" of the novel being a prime exemplar of such odious behavior makes it difficult to like her, and therefore a bit hard to really enjoy the book. I guess I find that I need to like a character in order to want things to work out well for them (and that's really what Austen's all about, isn't it?).

There's certainly humor in the book. But I found myself quite often just focusing on how incredibly selfish they were, without the benefit of knowing they'll get their comeuppance in the end.
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