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Mansfield Park

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LoveHistory
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Mansfield Park

Post by LoveHistory » Fri February 6th, 2009, 4:01 pm

Hotly debated! Rather disliked (except by those who love it)! And still waiting to be turned into a definitive screen version!

My personal opinion is that Mansfield Park may have been Jane's masterpiece.

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boswellbaxter
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Post by boswellbaxter » Fri February 6th, 2009, 4:43 pm

It's my favorite too. Actually, no, I think I like Persuasion a little better.

But I think people who complain that Fanny Price is dull miss the point of the novel. Jane Austen knew perfectly well what she was doing; Fanny isn't supposed to sparkle, like the Crawfords. But they have an empty core inside them, whereas Fanny has inner strength and strong moral values, which some readers make the mistake of equating with priggishness.
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Telynor
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Post by Telynor » Sat February 7th, 2009, 5:56 am

Mansfield Park is my next book in my rereading of Austen in the last year to now. It's very interesting to be reading them in the order that Miss Austen wrote them, you can really see the maturing author emerging. I did like the film adaptation I saw some years ago, as it did help me figure out what was going on.

While I do have a very soft spot for both P&P and S&S, I think my favourite is probably Persausion.

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Leo62
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Post by Leo62 » Sat February 7th, 2009, 10:21 am

I like MP too - it's subtle, mature and atmospheric. The conventional wisdom goes that Fanny Price is hard for modern readers to like. She embodies all sorts of very unfashionable virtues, rather in the same vein as Dorothea Brooke in Middlemarch.

The recent adaptations fall down by trying to "sex up" her character (I mean, Billie Piper for chrissake! :D ).

Leave Fanny alone - she's fine ;)

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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Sat February 7th, 2009, 5:37 pm

Actually, MP is not my favorite.

Interesting tidbit: I had not read the book when I saw the 1999 movie version. Fabulous cast! But I hated it on instinct. Years later I read the book and loved it.

boswellbaxter put it so well! Good people aren't always interesting.

Another thing I like about MP is the town/country aspect. And how she contrasts nature's beauty with the artificial "grandeur" imposed by people.

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