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The Trollope Project - Archives > Doctor Thorne: Chapters 1-6 - October 2-October 8

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message 1: by Lynnm (new)

Lynnm | 3027 comments Even though I just read this book recently, I'm enjoying it the second time.

In these first six chapters, we are just getting acquainted with all of the characters, and have a basic understanding of the premise of the novel.

One, describe the main characters: Doctor Thorne, Mary Thorne, Mr. Gresham, Frank Gresham, and Lady Arabella de Courcy.

Two, what is the main theme of the novel? (HINT: Doctor Thorne has it, the Gresham's have it, and the de Courcy's have it. Mary Thorne only half has it. And in "Barchester Towers," Mr. Thorne talked about it at great length and took great proud in it.)

Three, Mary Thorne asks: "And then came into her mind those curious questions; what makes a gentleman? what makes a gentlewoman? What is the inner reality, the spiritualised quintessence of that privilege in the world that men call rank, which forces the thousands and hundreds of thousands to bow down before the few elect? What gives, or can give it, or should give it?" Given that statement and Mary's feisty refusal to bow down to her superiors, do you believe that Trollope will try to overthrown the importance of the aristocracy or gentry?

Four, Frank will be strongly asked to marry for money, but on the surface, it appears that he loves Mary, who doesn't have money. Without spoilers, and from what little you know of Frank, do you think that Frank will acquiesce? Or will he follow his own heart?

Five, Roger Scatcherd seems to have risen in the world. What is his backstory, and how does it relate to Mary? What is his position now, and how is he connected to Mr. Gresham, the elder?


message 2: by Lori, Moderator (last edited Oct 02, 2016 11:53AM) (new)

Lori Goshert (lori_laleh) | 1369 comments Mod
Seems the themes are lineage and money.

It's a really interesting book so far! I really like Mary. I like how Trollope made her a heroine who speaks her mind. I like the Gresham sisters too.

And... nothing good comes from De Courcy castle: stealing governesses, bad medical advice, bad child-rearing advice, snobby and heartless cousins (at least the boys and Alexandrina), probably an abusive marriage. I guess Trollope is making the rather obvious (to us in the 21st century anyways) point that good lineage doesn't always equal good people.

I was wondering if the "Scatcherd" that Mr. Gresham was borrowing money from was the same Roger Scatcherd. Seems he's done very well! It says in the book description (possible spoiler if you skipped the description) (view spoiler)

I was also wondering how Mary's parentage was such a secret that even her friends the Gresham sisters don't know about it? Wouldn't it be natural to ask her if she remembers her parents (they probably assume she's an orphan)? Or would that have been a rude question in those times? Did everyone suspect she was illegitimate (and probably a product of rape, in this case, but few people would have known that part) and avoid asking out of delicacy? It just seems odd that no one would know, considering the events surrounding her birth didn't take place too far from where she is now.

The part where Trollope said (about women like Lady Gresham) that "Nature gives them bosoms for show but not for use" cracked me up. It reminded me about the whole breastfeeding debate today (although this was obviously a completely different circumstance). I think someone complained once about a woman breastfeeding in Victoria's Secret.


message 3: by Lily (last edited Oct 02, 2016 09:13AM) (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments Lori wrote: "....I think someone complained once about a woman breastfeeding in Victoria's Secret. ..."

A few recent incidents/media outbursts in the U.S.:

http://www.people.com/article/breastf...

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/br...

Personal anecdote: (view spoiler)


message 4: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
I agree with you Lori, about the themes and my opinion of the DeCourcys. They are a horrible family. Lady Arabella and her family are the major cause of Mr. Gresham's financial difficulties.
I don't know if Frank will be able to stand up to all the pressure from his family. He is still very young in the ways of the world.
Just a little bit of trivia: the French governess who accused the maid of stealing the necklace (?) was called Mademoiselle Larron. Larron means thief in French.
I am enjoying the book. It is just as witty as the first two in this series.


message 5: by Lily (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments Rosemarie wrote: "Just a little bit of trivia: the French governess who accused the maid of stealing the necklace (?) was called Mademoiselle Larron. Larron means thief in French...."

Much enjoy that kind of detail (foreshadowing?). Thx, Rosemarie!

Isn't Arabella the name of Jude's wife in Jude the Obscure (1894)? Wondering.....? May not have been so unusual in those days, however.

Dr. Thorne (1858)


message 6: by Robin P, Moderator (new)

Robin P | 2201 comments Mod
Lori, I think what you mentioned about Mary from the book description is definitely a spoiler .so you might want to go back and mark it that way. I've read this book before and I don't think it is revealed till late in the book. That's a problem with descriptions and blurbs. I read them when I am deciding whether to choose a book, but when I am ready to start reading, I try to avoid even glancing at the description inside the front cover, or on the back cover, because they often give away significant information.


message 7: by Robin P, Moderator (new)

Robin P | 2201 comments Mod
I remembered this book as less humorous than Barchester Towers, but Trollope does get some digs in about society, politics, money, youth, etc.


message 8: by Lori, Moderator (new)

Lori Goshert (lori_laleh) | 1369 comments Mod
Robin wrote: "Lori, I think what you mentioned about Mary from the book description is definitely a spoiler .so you might want to go back and mark it that way. I've read this book before and I don't think it is ..."

Edited with spoiler brackets


message 9: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
I have also learned never to read the forward of a novel, unless it is a reread.


message 10: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Lynnm wrote: "Two, what is the main theme of the novel? (HINT: Doctor Thorne has it, the Gresham's have it, and the de Courcy's have it. Mary Thorne only half has it. And in "Barchester Towers," Mr. Thorne talked about it at great length and took great proud in it.)"

I assume you're thinking about pride in "blood," or lineage, or however you want to term it.

However, I question whether it is the main theme of the novel. I can't say much more here, since I know the novel fairly well and don't want to say something that would be a spoiler, but while I certainly agree that it's a theme, I don't see it as the main theme (and it seems at times, at least to me, to be treated more irreverently than respectfully by Trollope himself, if not by his characters.


message 11: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Lori wrote: "And... nothing good comes from De Courcy castle: stealing governesses, bad medical advice, bad child-rearing advice, snobby and heartless cousins (at least the boys and Alexandrina), probably an abusive marriage. I guess Trollope is making the rather obvious (to us in the 21st century anyways) point that good lineage doesn't always equal good people."

Very nice point. Not only good lineage, but good lineage coupled with big money. These are the leaders of society, but of what quality or value is their leadership? Who makes more sense and shows more responsibility in this novel, at least so far -- the wealthy or the non-wealthy?


message 12: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
I think Doctor Thorne is a man of good sense. He actually charged his patients less if they lived within a certain radius and dispensed his own medecine. ( gasp)
I am also quite certain that he had a higher success rate treating his patients than the other practicioners in the area.


message 13: by Lily (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments Everyman wrote: "Lynnm wrote: "Two, what is the main theme of the novel? (HINT: Doctor Thorne has it, the Gresham's have it, and the de Courcy's have it. Mary Thorne only half has it. And in "Barchester Towers," Mr..."

I'm going to cheat and put Wikipedia's statement of the book's themes here:
(view spoiler)

You can decide whether you want to read them now or later, or never, but at some point I would be interested in the extent to which we agree or disagree. Somehow it seems to me critics are seldom so direct in naming themes on complex stories. I wonder why here -- did Trollope himself make comments somewhere? (Did we ever specify the themes of Barchester Towers or of The Warden in our discussions?)


message 14: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
The title of the book is Doctor Thorne, so I think there will more about the doctor in the following chapters.
Books can have different streams of themes, but I think that telling a good story is the best way to show it.
I can already see that there are many possiblities for Trollope to develop his story and complicate matters for the characters.


message 15: by Lily (last edited Oct 02, 2016 08:07PM) (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments A sidebar to Dr. Thorne discussion, but since we are talking about Trollope novel themes, I'll give a spoiler entry for The Warden from George Orwell:

(view spoiler)


message 16: by Robin P, Moderator (new)

Robin P | 2201 comments Mod
Rosemarie wrote: "I think Doctor Thorne is a man of good sense. He actually charged his patients less if they lived within a certain radius and dispensed his own medecine. ( gasp)
I am also quite certain that he had..."


I was just watching Poldark on PBS where there is a generational difference between the old doctor who believes in bleeding and purging his aristocratic patients, and the younger one who makes up remedies from herbs and treats people of all classes. (The old doctor has the Dickensian name of Dr. Choke, maybe spelled Choak, but still appropriate.)


message 17: by Dianne (last edited Oct 06, 2016 07:57AM) (new)

Dianne | 91 comments a few varied thoughts...

the proper roles of the physician as described in this section were interesting to me, why would it be distasteful for a doctor to bill for services? and why the disdain for doctors also dispensing medicine?

do you think people would agree with this statement today? "All the world feels that a man when married acquires some of the attributes of an old woman—he becomes, to a certain extent, a motherly sort of being; he acquires a conversance with women's ways and women's wants, and loses the wilder and offensive sparks of his virility."

I need to find an occasion to use this line sometime:

[insert appropriate name here] is such an obstinate, pig-headed, ignorant fool, that it is no use speaking to [him/her]; it would be wasting fragrance on the desert air"

oh, and how can you not just love mary? Mary who thinks: "That offered at her feet she knew she would never tempt her to yield up the fortress of her heart, the guardianship of her soul, the possession of her mind; not that alone, nor that, even, as any possible slightest fraction of a make-weight."


message 18: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
In response to your question about what makes a gentleman, the society of the time considered it one way- good breeding and background. If you were from a "good" family, you were considered a gentleman if you rode to the hounds, dressed in a certain way, socialised with the correct people, etc. The military was a suitable career if you were a younger son. Women were expected to marry into a good family if at all possible.
I do not agree with this definition of gentleman at all. A true gentleman or gentlewoman shows their "quality" by their behaviour and respect to those around, by recognizing merit where it is due.


message 19: by Bonnie (new)

Bonnie | 228 comments Dianne wrote: "
the proper roles of the physician as described in this section were interesting to me, why would it be distasteful for a doctor to bill for services? and why the disdain for doctors also dispensing medicine?"


Possible reasons? 1. Established medicine didn’t trust medication yet, due to snake oil in the past? 2. Conflict of interest: tendency to recommend unneeded medications just to make more money?
Maybe equivalent of today, if dental office recommends electric toothbrushes or whitening systems that they sell, or doctor’s office owns their own MRI machine. Then you can’t completely trust that their recommendation is unbiased or fairly priced. Of course it might be more convenient for patients.

http://bottomlineinc.com/is-your-doct...

I didn't quite get the billing thing either. Dr. Fillgrave charged a guinea; Dr. Thorne charged seven-and-sixpence, and "would lug out half-a-crown from his breeches' pocket and give it in change for a ten-shilling piece."


message 20: by Odette (new)

Odette (odman) Rosemarie wrote: "In response to your question about what makes a gentleman, the society of the time considered it one way- good breeding and background. If you were from a "good" family, you were considered a gentl..."

Dr Thorne seems to me to be the true gentleman according to your definition, and am finding him one of the most interesting characters in this novel

The medical profession at that stage was based on class, as in society. Dr Thorne was perhaps challenging this notion.
"For to be a physician was rather to be a gentleman (their wives could be presented in court, while those of surgeons could not), and anything that smacked of manual labor - for example, cutting people open or doing serious physical exams, was not gentlemanly."
http://www.steampunktribune.com/2007/...

It was not until after this novel was written in 1856 that the British Medical Association was established and from 1858 the General Medical Council (GMC) controlled entry through central registration
http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/articles...

Also, Dr Thorne's attitude towards the bringing up of children is very interesting - contrary to or advanced for that era.
"He had a great theory as to the happiness of children ...........- he argued that the principal duty which a parent owed to a child was to make him happy..." Chap 3 (towards the end)


message 21: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Odette wrote: ""For to be a physician was rather to be a gentleman (their wives could be presented in court, while those of surgeons could not), and anything that smacked of manual labor - for example, cutting people open or doing serious physical exams, was not gentlemanly."."

Which is why compounding your own medicines is not considered acceptable for a physician; it's manual labor, and smacks of shopkeeping, which gentlemen don't do.


message 22: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Odette wrote: "Also, Dr Thorne's attitude towards the bringing up of children is very interesting - contrary to or advanced for that era.
"He had a great theory as to the happiness of children ...........- he argued that the principal duty which a parent owed to a child was to make him happy...""


Disgraceful. Spare the rod and spoil the child! [g]


message 23: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
It seems like Doctor Thorne had advanced ideas for his time in more than just the medical field. His niece is fortunate to have him for a guardian.


message 24: by Frances, Moderator (new)

Frances (francesab) | 1868 comments Mod
I've always found amusing (and at the same time rather sad) the idea that having to work for one's money, rather than to inherit it, somehow lessened a person's standing in English society (and likewise in other European societies of the time). Perhaps this is why society Physicians never openly billed-it was a way of keeping up the pretence that one was a gentleman and therefore did not exchange work for money.

Also, I believe that at the time Apothecaries were seen as the providers of healthcare to the poor and the labourers, while Physicians served the more wealthy and the Aristocracy. Surgeons were another class altogether, having originated separately from Physicians.


message 25: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 670 comments I think that, to understand it, we have to look into the origins of that English perspective about working for one’s money versus inheriting.

The original feudal model, however inequitable, was one of exchange—at its best, a kind of extended-family model for society where the serfs had an obligation of labor and the lord had an obligation to see that the people living on his land had food, shelter, protection, and care of various kinds. All were working for the common benefit of the hundred. By the nineteenth century, I grant you, the model was mostly a shell and a mockery; it’s just that the assumptions were slower to die than the reality, as is so often the case with humans.


message 26: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Abigail wrote: "I think that, to understand it, we have to look into the origins of that English perspective about working for one’s money versus inheriting.

The original feudal model, however inequitable, was o..."


That's a great observation. Most customs, no matter how strange or unreasonable they seem to us today, had a logical basis in the historical needs of the cultures that developed them.


message 27: by Renee (new)

Renee M | 751 comments I'm just catching up. I thought this first section was brilliant. So very funny, especially since so much of it was exposition. I've been reading the Aubrey-Maturin series by Patrick O'Brian where the doctor vs. surgeon question arises (as pertaining to naval vessels). Also, Gaskell's Wives and Daughters. So I wasn't so surprised by the reaction to Dr. Thorne's behavior. Just amused by how funny people can be. I'm also wondering if one of the themes addressed in this novel will take up the rising merchant class, since both Scatcherd and Thorne seem to have some head for money.

I do have a question. (As a non-Brit) Were the "gentry" considered if good family because they could trace their family back to someone titled? Even if the traces were fairly extended. Because it's always seemed to me (through my reading) that there was something more to it than just money and land. What became of the children of all those who were not the first son? I assumed they made up the surrounding social strata. "Gently born" and therefore if a certain class. Is that about right?


message 28: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
Family background was the main factor, especially for the "landed gentry". There was/is a book called DeBrett's that lists the all those with titles including their background.
It was definitely not a meritocracy; "breeding" was the most important thing.
Lady de Courcy is a prime example of this mentality.


message 29: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 86 comments It has been a while since I read Trollope (The Prime Minister years ago), but I am delighted to be back in his world. This book makes me laugh out loud at times as Trollope creates such peculiar social situations. It is such a strange (but wonderful) combination of comedy and drama wrapped in social and political observations. No wonder people become Trollope fans!
One tool that I am not quite used to is Trollope's tendency to occasionally step back from the story and directly speak to us (the readers) from a musing and humorous author perspective. It is as if he pauses the story to get a chance to chat with us and add some peculiar commentary "on top" of what has already been described. It simply adds another dimension to the story.

I find Dr. Thorne to be a very enjoyable reading experience (so far) as Trollope eloquently weaves his characters with great doses of depth and warmth. It makes me smile as I am well aware of that Trollope was a quite prolific writer. So many more novels and stories to traverse!!! Are the other books of the Barsetshire chronicles similar in quality/writing style or is Dr. Thorne a unique creation?


message 30: by Hilary (new)

Hilary (agapoyesoun) | 181 comments Hi Bonnie. When you talk of not quite following the billing system, I'm not sure what you mean. If it is the prices the two doctors charge it is this: Dr Fillgrave charges a guinea which is £1 (one pound) and one shilling

Dr Thorne charges 7s and 6d which is seven shillings and 6 pence. The half a crown change is a coin of the value of 2 shillings and 6 pence. So he gives the change that adds up to 10 shillings. Therefore 7 and 6 + 2 and 6 = 10 s. There are 12 pence in a shilling and 20 shillings in a pound.

Sorry if it's something entirely different that you're asking for and all this is old hat!


message 31: by Haaze (new)

Haaze | 86 comments Frances wrote: "I believe that at the time Apothecaries were seen as the providers of healthcare to the poor and the labourers, while Physicians served the more wealthy and the Aristocracy. Surgeons were another class altogether, having originated separately from Physicians."

I am pondering the training of these professions in Victorian England. I presume that most doctors and surgeons were (mostly) gentlemen that were sent off to schools in major cities to gain training and experience. Apothecaries seem to be a spin-off (i.e. less training)? I found this blog entry that enlightened me quite a bit. I figure that some of you may find it interesting as well.

http://englishhistoryauthors.blogspot...


message 32: by Nicole (new)

Nicole | 12 comments I'm late (but enthusiastic)!

My impression about the money/billing thing was not only that it's "common" to work for your money (which is almost certainly true), but that actions which call attention to money or its exchange are considered vulgar as well. That is, the thing that's wrong with giving change is that it makes explicit a monetary transaction, likewise presenting a bill; instead all and sundry should pretend that no money is changing hands even if it clearly is.


message 33: by Renee (new)

Renee M | 751 comments My parents still hold that discussions of money are somehow distasteful. You MIGHT talk about it at home but never in public.


message 34: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 670 comments There’s a lot of that kind of inhibition about money subjects in my family, too. I’ve always hated it—it seems snobbish to me, as in “I don’t have to think about money because money’s always there.” That was very trying for those in the family who were struggling financially, because when someone asked why you didn’t own X or Y, you couldn’t say, “Because I can’t afford it, you insensitive clod!”

Now that a lot of my family have fallen on relatively hard times, it’s a real disadvantage for them not to be able to say so and discuss the problem. I keep wanting to help them and give them advice on how to manage what they have left, but I can’t because they won’t say what they have (and what advice you give is dependent on what there is). Really sad.

Financial literacy should be taught in the schools!


message 35: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
I think that Lady Arabella should also be taught financial literacy. She seems to think that her husband is fabulously wealthy, the way that she spends money.


message 36: by Frances, Moderator (new)

Frances (francesab) | 1868 comments Mod
I actually prefer having some inhibition around talk about money-otherwise it seems to be a lot of talking about what people have paid for things or what people earn or worse, having someone flat out ask you what you paid for something-I've been hesitant at times to say how much or how little I paid.

However in the novel, it seems as if there is an inhibition even between husband and wife to talk about their money situation (as if his admitting that they are short of money would be unthinkable) and for discussing fees or costs with the person who is providing the goods and services. These inhibitions can certainly lead to difficult misunderstandings and people not being paid what they are due.


message 37: by Lori, Moderator (new)

Lori Goshert (lori_laleh) | 1369 comments Mod
Abigail wrote: "Financial literacy should be taught in the schools!"

Yes! And agriculture. We learned sewing, cooking, and wood shop in our school, but I would have liked to learn more about growing food.


message 38: by Nicole (new)

Nicole | 12 comments Rosemarie wrote: "I think that Lady Arabella should also be taught financial literacy. She seems to think that her husband is fabulously wealthy, the way that she spends money."

I'm not sure that she thinks he's wealthier than he is, it's not a mistake she's making about his solvency. I think it's more that she just doesn't consider it relevant to what she wants from life, what she's been accustomed to, and what she thinks she deserves.

The parliamentary elections, for example. It is perhaps true that a seat could have returned financial gains, but I doubt that was her motivation. I think Lady Arabella didn't really think past wanting a husband in parliament, because that's what one does and what one has.

I think of her as being more akin to a child who wants an expensive xmas present that the family can't afford, and who can't quite grasp the concept of affording things, than I do a person who has evaluated (or misevaluated) her husband's wealth. She just wants things, and she does what she has to to get them: nagging, guilting, manipulating. (Typing that just now, I am strongly reminded of Middlemarch's Rosamond. She also sees very clearly about status and things and not at all about money per se.)


message 39: by Renee (new)

Renee M | 751 comments I'm enjoying your analogy, Nicole.


message 40: by Hedi (new)

Hedi | 978 comments Rosemarie wrote: "I think that Lady Arabella should also be taught financial literacy. She seems to think that her husband is fabulously wealthy, the way that she spends money."

Yes, I was thinking the same thing. The De Courcy are rather blaming Gresham for losing money, but in the end lady Arabella has a big part in it.
I have not been able to post anything yet, am fighting to catch up with you all, which seems a little hard for me at the moment, but I am trying, got already to chapter 10.


message 41: by Hedi (new)

Hedi | 978 comments Nicole wrote: "Rosemarie wrote: "I think that Lady Arabella should also be taught financial literacy. She seems to think that her husband is fabulously wealthy, the way that she spends money."

I'm not sure that ..."


Lady Arabella is not used to do house bookkeeping like e.g. Dora in David Copperfield is at least trying. She even had a kind of book teaching her how to do that. However, Lady Arabella is too high for thinking that way. I think she does not even see that anything could keep her from keeping her living standards she grew up with. That is something others have to cope with, but not she. This type of ignorance is maybe a way to protect herself, esp. from falling in the regards of her Courcy family.


message 42: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
Nicole, you are certainly right that Lady Arabella would rather not know about her husband's financial situation. She has a sense of "entitlement". She is a de Courcy and she should have whatever she wants, even if it causes financial difficulties for the family. She needs to keep up appearances.


message 43: by Rosemarie, Moderator (new)

Rosemarie | 2890 comments Mod
Hedi, I agree with your assessment of her personality.


message 44: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Nicole wrote: "'m not sure that she thinks he's wealthier than he is, it's not a mistake she's making about his solvency. I think it's more that she just doesn't consider it relevant to what she wants from life, what she's been accustomed to, and what she thinks she deserves. "

I agree with you. She came to the marriage with certain very reasonable expectations, and just because her husband has been very stupid she doesn't see that as a reason she shouldn't have the benefit of her bargain.


message 45: by Nicole (new)

Nicole | 12 comments Everyman wrote: "Nicole wrote: "'m not sure that she thinks he's wealthier than he is, it's not a mistake she's making about his solvency. I think it's more that she just doesn't consider it relevant to what she wa..."

I also think there's a way in which you have to blame him more than his wife. He almost certainly has legal control of the money. Why couldn't he just say no, dear, I'm not running again? I think this description is meant to show Arabella as manipulative, but also to show her husband and weak, and possibly just the littlest bit stupid.

I think you're right to point out her expectations. I think in many ways marriage was a contract, and a man was expected to be able to support a wife financially, since women in this period weren't terribly able to support themselves. The definition of support varies by social class, and, while we might expect Arabella to carefully consider her choice of husband, once married her expectations are only reasonable. It's possible to condemn the entire system (as indeed I do, from my fortunate historical perspective), but I'm not sure it's fair to say that individual actors within it are bad for expecting from it what it claims to deliver.

This doesn't, for me, even rise to the level of internal contradiction, as some other issues with women, for example, do--systematically marrying women whom you refuse to educate and who are like 20 years younger than you, and then being shocked when they seem like children, for example. This is an internal contradiction that falls into the cake and eat it too category. But once marriage is agreed by all parties to be a financial alliance that also shores up class distinctions, it's reasonable for those parties to expect out of it a financial alliance which shores up class distinctions.


message 46: by Lily (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments Finally got to Chapter 8 last night (listening). This thing feels a bit long winded at this point in listening. At the moment, I can't really add anything to the interesting perspectives and comments already made. It does feel a bit to me as if this social style/structure almost needed arranged marriages to succeed.


message 47: by Lily (last edited Nov 03, 2016 02:30PM) (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2632 comments A rather delightful character description, a bit tongue-in-cheek, it seems, perhaps:

"Miss Oriel was in every respect a nice neighbour; she was good-humoured, lady-like, lively, neither too clever nor too stupid, belonging to a good family, sufficiently fond of this world's good things, as became a pretty young lady so endowed, and sufficiently fond, also, of the other world's good things, as became the mistress of a clergyman's house." (Chapter 6.)

Trollope, Anthony. Doctor Thorne (Kindle Locations 1144-1146).


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The Readers Review: Literature from 1714 to 1910

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