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Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

Sense and

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Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

“Sense and Sensibility”

is a novel written by Jane Austen, published in 1811. It was Austen’s first published novel and is considered one of her greatest works. The novel explores the lives of the Dashwood sisters, Elinor and Marianne, as they navigate the complex social and romantic world of late 18th century England.

The novel opens with the death of Mr. Henry Dashwood, leaving his wife and three daughters with very little money. The family is forced to leave their comfortable home and move to a cottage in Devonshire, where they must learn to live on a much smaller income. The novel then follows the romantic pursuits of Elinor and Marianne, as they navigate the expectations of society and the pressures of their own desires.

Elinor, the older sister, is the embodiment of “sense,” possessing a rational and practical outlook on life. She is reserved and self-controlled, and always puts the needs of others before her own. Marianne, on the other hand, embodies “sensibility,” with a romantic and emotional nature that leads her to behave impulsively and sometimes unwisely.

The novel explores the tension between these two qualities, and the different ways in which they shape the lives of the two sisters. Elinor’s sense and rationality serve her well in navigating the complexities of social interaction and romantic relationships, while Marianne’s sensibility leads her into romantic and emotional entanglements that threaten to derail her life.

One of the central themes of the novel is the importance of social status and wealth in late 18th century England. Austen explores the limitations that society places on women of different social classes, and how these limitations affect their opportunities for love and happiness. The novel also critiques the idea that wealth and social status are the most important factors in determining a person’s worth, and highlights the importance of individual character and integrity.

Austen’s writing is characterized by her wit, her insight into human nature, and her ability to create memorable and engaging characters. Her novels are celebrated for their social commentary and their exploration of the complexities of human relationships.

“Sense and Sensibility” is a timeless work of literature that continues to resonate with readers today. Its exploration of the tension between reason and emotion, and its critique of the limitations placed on women by society, make it a work that is both relevant and compelling. Austen’s sharp observations of human behavior, and her ability to create vivid and relatable characters, have made this novel a classic of English literature.

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