Sense and Sensibility Jane Austen | Literary Analysis

The division and contrast of the term sense and the term sensibility in the book title is a common viewpoint that Jane Austen’s classic can be seen. The separation is an obvious symbol contrasting the book’s two main female siblings, Elinor and then Marianne. According to the deeper meaning metaphors, Elinor embodies traits of “sense” including reason, control, common sense, social awareness, and a well-rounded appreciation of caring for others. In direct contrast, Marianne, the younger one, depicts persona of “sensibility” which include high sentiment, whimsical, impulsiveness, and ecstatic tunnel-vision passion. Whereas Elinor hides her longing for Edward a young man in the area, Marianne frankly and unapologetically proclaims her love for John, another male suitor. Their different approaches towards the gentlemen they desire, and what they do to convey that love, echo their conflicting personalities and life values.


However, the novel cannot be examined singularly as a straightforward literary analysis of the metaphors of contrast. Elinor, though representing sense, does not lack vigor, and Marianne, though representing sensibility, is not always irrational and stubborn. Marianne is a seventeen-year-old girl who is naïve, spontaneous, and full of romantic dreaming. She tends to take everything to the extreme and is the ultimate drama queen.She personifies sensibility and becomes emotionally disturbed by life during those troubled times. The novel portrays that Marianne largely inherits this trait from her mother who is represented in a similar way as Marianne. She is thin-skinned, poignant, theatrical, and daydreams all day long about romance.


Marianne very much represents the heart of the novel but Elinor represents the mind….


Although Jane Austen like to poke fun at the positive notion of susceptibility in the novel she doesn’t fight for the release of emotional responsiveness altogether but more about the formation of equilibrium between being a rational person and being a silly overly-passionate person. An example would be Fanny Dashwood’s cruel eruption of hurt near the conclusion of the book which uncovers that not enough feeling or being impassive towards love is as precarious and damaging as excessively loving a girl.


The ending illustrates a nice metaphor as well. The two women, Elinor and then Marianne become happy with the outcome, but only because first by taking wisdom from each other. The dichotomy turns into convergence. Together they discovered how to experience and put across their emotions wholeheartedly while also holding onto their poise and self-possession. The story’s triumph isn’t just a product of the conquering of sense banishing sensibility or even their rank. Moreover, we are reminded that the personas of Marianne (sensibility) and Elinor (sense) work well and even complement one another when the two characteristics are combined. The theme of a split division, polarity, and how these opposites complement each other in the ending, is an overarching genius theme throughout the novel.


Although it is a fact that Austen’s novels concentrate on the precarious job of women in Regency society, a few of her female characters do, in reality, use their influence to get the ends they desire. This is a metaphor unto itself. Hence the novel is mostly concerned with ideas of the power women have over men. Sense and Sensibility, the very first novel of Austen is an excellent representation that has been reproduced several times since its very first publication in 1811. It might be said to be the very first English novel in the actual sense of the expression.


Austen wasn’t yet an extraordinary novelist when she wrote this story, and there’s too much contrivance in how she dispatches her men to London when she’s done with them. She firmly believed that to form a right judgment, one must have right principles and perception of the nature of other people. She is mirroring the basic tension of her times in this work. In an ideal world, Jane Austen appears to be saying, this is the way things should work out. She still is, however, one of the greatest novelists of English literature. Austen herself would likely not have disagreed with a number of her naysayers’ objections in modern woman’s society. She was much preoccupied with the question of how the truth about a person could be known. In her eyes, the fact that she liked to keep her own sex life private and that she was writing about Marianne’s sex life had tensions of social irony that would entertain most fans.


Austen succeeds when she writes on the aspect of female sexuality that is too vibrant for its own good. She wins our hearts and minds utilizing irony as a means of moral and social satire. One of many reasons Austen’s novels endure is they continue to be relevant today to people’s emotions. It’s just the same goings on, different day.


Just remember, perhaps it’s our imperfections that make us so perfect for one another – Jane Austen

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