"Sense and Sensibility" by Jane Austen

Essay by Lotsis January 2006

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"Sense and Sensibility" is a book by Jane Austen. It is set partly in London, partly in its surroundings in Southern England in the 19th century. The main characters are Elinor and Marianne Dashwood, two beautiful sisters who are forced to leave their home, Norland, when their father dies and leaves the house to his eldest son, Elinor and Marianne's brother John.

Of the two, Marianne represents the "sensibility" and Elinor is the "sense". Being older, Elinor often is the one who thinks with logic and doesn't show her feelings much. Marianne is very passionate, in joy and in sorrow, and isn't afraid to show it. Elinor is a talented painter and Marianne sings and plays the piano beautifully, where you can see the influence of society.

When they move from Norland, Elinor is forced to part with her love, Edward Ferrars. Marianne, convinced that she will never find a man satisfying her demands, hurts her ankle when they are taking a walk with Elinor and is saved by a man called Willoughby.

They fall in love and spend every day together.

Elinor wonders why Edward won't pay them a visit, when Willoughby is suddenly called back to London. His unexpected departure leaves Marianne very upset; she won't eat or sleep for many days. At the same time, Mr. And Mrs. Palmer, distant relatives of the Dashwoods, who gave them their cottage to live in, invite their relatives to stay. Amongst these are the Steele sisters, Lucy and Anne. Lucy reveals to Elinor that she and Edward Ferrars are in love and have been engaged for four years. The only obstacle is that Lucy has no money, and Edward's family wants him to marry a wealthy girl. Elinor vows to keep this a secret and never says anything...