Notes on Introduction to the Humanities -- Hum A212

William Jamison - Instructor

Lecture 15


Reading Jane Austen

The irony of it all. There are lots of differing points of view regarding how to interpret the irony in her novels. Part of this problem I suggest is the nature of thinking to be recursive. Do I interpret a line like "imbecility in females is a great enhancement of their personal charms" to be meant as true? Is it a comment on the nature of males? Is it irony in that is is ridiculous because of the injustice of it but still true of males attitudes? Is there irony since the smart women use this to charm stupid men? How many other levels of irony might be interpreted here? Which, if any, were the intentions of the author? All of them?

But it certainly shows one way of dealing with the injustice of the situation in Jane Austen's day and certainly still applies in many respects today. This is certainly one tool feminists have at their disposal.


Baroque contemporary Gary Ykalina male soprano.




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