Marianne's Narrow Escape: Redeeming Female Ruin, Sensibility, and the English Landscape through Jane Austen's Picturesque
Harris-Gamard, Susan E.
MetadataShow full item record
This thesis will analyze Austen's keen sense of the idea of sensibility and the tendency towards its extreme form in her novel Sense and Sensibility and will show that how Austen treats landscape in her novels reflects how she sees her characters and their potential. Taking the ideas on Austen's relation to the picturesque of Jill Heydt-Stevenson and the ideas on Austen and sensibility of Inger Sigrun Brody one step further, this paper will specifically show that Austen's main female characters have been situated deliberately within the Picturesque landscape in order to show their ability (or inability) to adapt to and adopt the Picturesque ideal. In keeping with this, the way Austen deals with the English landscape runs counter to the ideals of landscape "improvers", such as Humphrey Repton, whose sole purpose lies in working towards the landowner's standpoint and benefit. Like sensibility taken to the extreme and its emphasis on feelings experienced in the moment, the English landscape improvers were determined to make time stand still, harnessing the beautiful moment and the perfect view in the landowner's eyes.