- Oct 2020
She affectionately reminds Mr. Franklin Blake that she is a Christian, and that it is, therefore, quite impossible for him to offend her
Is that what it means to be a Christian? Because girl, you've been offended by stuff nonstop lol
As for me, my sense of propriety was completely bewildered. I was so painfully uncertain whether it was my first duty to close my eyes, or to stop my ears, that I did neither
That's not a real excuse Clack...
- Sep 2020
I sowed the good seed, in spite of him, by throwing a second tract in at the window of the cab.
It's just mind-blowing how satisfied she gets from distributing her tracts among random people who could not be clearer about their reluctance to receive them. Clack, much like Betteredge, assumes she knows the depths of people and is so judgmental of the unconventional (e.g., Rachel) but completely fails to recognize that her own behavior is far from being desired, and is, to all eyes, the unconventional and deplorable one.
I wonder if this is Collins' way to humorously ridicule this phenomenon. More broadly, I wonder if Collins' use of extreme and blatantly hypocritical narrators who inspire hatred (e.g., Clack and Betteredge), is his calling for moderation in society.
Clack, you’re dying to hear the end of it–I won’t faint, expressly to oblige you
The mutual enmity between Clack and Rachel is evident. The question is -- who or what started it? It is very reasonable to assume, based on Clack's language, that her overt hatred towards Rachel has caused Rachel to hate her in return (who wouldn't?). But I'm wondering if Rachel's always had some kind of a "sinful" inclination (which could perhaps explain why she, of all, has the Moonstone) that triggered the conservative mind of Miss Clack to develop envy and detestation.
exercise your poor carnal reason
another comparison to Betteredge, who says "Cultivate a superiority to reason, and see how you pare the claws of all the sensible people when they try to scratch you for your own good!" Betteredge beholds reason while Clack describes it as "carnal" and prefers faith. However, regardless of which they hold in higher regard, Collins seems to ridicule both of them
I paid the cabman exactly his fare. He received it with an oath; upon which I instantly gave him a tract.
For someone who professes to be so devout, Clack's miserliness when it comes to money is downright hilarious. She frequently mentions the "pecuniary pressure" of Franklin's check, doesn't tip, and yet constantly paints herself as a generous soul. At this point it is evident that this character is a caricature of the hypocritical Christian whom Collins has built up to tear down. I expect her assessment of the sequence of events to be comically wrong.
had habits of order
interesting way of introducing one's self. could be already an indicator that her voice will be drastically different from Betteredge (who often meanders)
It was a direct encouragement to her reckless way of talking, and her insolent reference to me.
Wow. Miss Clack hates Rachel this much to the degree that does not align with her "very" Christian ways. Perhaps her malicious thoughts towards Rachel are projections of how she feels between their class difference, even if they are cousins.
Sorrow and sympathy! Oh, what Pagan emotions to expect from a Christian Englishwoman anchored firmly on her faith
What does it say about Clack's view of Christianity is sorrow and sympathy are pagan...
But, oh, don’t let us judge! My Christian friends, don’t let us judge!
You have been judging since you started speaking!
There was an absence of all lady-like restraint in her language and manner most painful to see. She was possessed by some feverish excitement which made her distressingly loud when she laughed, and sinfully wasteful and capricious in what she ate and drank at lunch.
Like Ashley's annotations above, I'm also quite intrigued about the varying impressions of Betteredge and Miss Clack on Rachel. In these lines, it may look that Miss Clack's irritation towards Rachel stems from how Rachel seems so "unconventional" (at least to Miss Clack's eyes), but it also sounds that she envies Rachel unorthodox ways.
and poor polite Mr. Godfrey had paid the penalty of
Miss Clack seems to be trying to 'protect' Mr. Godfrey throughout the naration. Might this be an indication of something more relevant to the plot. Narrators are supposed to be interpreted as truthful according to Collins, which further enchances the confusion. Nevertheless, that doesn't nessesarily exclude the possibility of underplaying certain facts, which seems to be what is happening to me. Assuming that this is the case, it acts as a strong indication for Mr. Godfrey being somehow involved. So far Miss Clack is depicted as a figure of questionable morality. It would be interesting to see what role Mr. Godfrey has at the end of the story.
On this occasion, however, she not only disappointed–she really shocked me. There was an absence of all lady-like restraint in her language and manner most painful to see
Interesting to see Clack having a pretty similar view of femininity to Betteredge even though she is a woman herself.
the fallen nature which we all inherit from Adam
Miss Clack already seems to be far more religious than Betteredge. I wonder if she is going to cite the Bible similarly to Betteredge with Robinson Crusoe. It also suggests that Clack will be conservative in her views of societal norms and traditions, and may have a strict, judgmental perspective in line with her Christian values.
The reference to Original sin also brings up the classic dichotomy of good vs evil, innocence vs guilt. Does Clack view knowledge of good and evil as a deficiency in human nature? Does she believe in free will? These factors bring may provide a basis for how her narrative may be skewed or unreliable. Even if she does not ponder these questions herself, Collins certainly posits them to the reader by invoking original sin here. Furthermore, this sets up a tension between western Christianity and eastern Hinduism, reinforcing the previously introduced conflict between domestic and foreign values.
I could write pages of affectionate warning on this one theme, but (alas!) I am not permitted to improve–I am condemned to narrate
You know, for someone who's condemned to narrate she's sure trying to shove in as much improvement as she can. This line, and everything about her order her parents instilled in her, seem to imply she thinks she's giving a completely objective account when she's clearly inserting her own biases and Christian viewpoint.
When I had dropped another tract through the area railings, I felt relieved, in some small degree, of a heavy responsibility towards others
Love how she did basically nothing, and then is like "I felt like I had done my duty towards others" Like all she did was stuff a track in the mailbox and walk away like she had converted her. We've seen some surely hypocritical Christian behavior from both Betteredge and Clack, and I wonder if this is meant as an inditement of those who think of themselves as good Christians, or if this is just meant to show that Betteredge and Clack aren't saints.
How can I describe the joy with which I now remembered that the precious clerical friends on whom I could rely, were to be counted, not by ones or twos, but by tens and twenties.
Is this not a genius bit of writing? her count of "Precious clerical friends" mapping to common monetary denominations: one pence, two pence, 10 pounds, 20 pounds! Its beautiful how concisely this one sentence describes Clack's character.
I find my insignificant existence suddenly remembered by Mr. Franklin Blake
There's this weird juxtaposition between pride and humility in this section. Zoe mentions it in an annotation later but I think this is such a polarizing way for Miss Clack to introduce herself by basically showing she's on the lower end of society but thinks so highly of herself. I also think the connection to religion here is interesting with humility being one of the Christian beatitudes. I get the feeling whereas Betteredge was "Christian" but really treated Robinson Crusoe as his bible, Miss Clack is going to be more of a hardcore Christian, or at least sees herself as more of one. I wonder how that'll inform her opinions on the pagan curse of the moonstone.
- Miss Clack
- Mr. Godfrey
- Class hierarchy
- Jul 2018
I propose to tell you–in the first place–what is known of the manner in which your cousin met his death; appending to the statement such inferences and conclusions as we are justified (according to my opinion) in drawing from the facts
Sergeant Cuff's narrative is very straight forward and to the point compared to the others, especially Miss Clack. Because Cuff's intention in this narrative is to relay facts to Franklin, and also because he is a detective, Cuff uses few unnecessary adjectives or "flowery" language. I would be interested in running a POS (Parts of Speech) analysis on Cuff's narrative and compare it to Clack and Betteredge, as well as the rest of the text.
Early on that memorable day, our gifted Mr. Godfrey happened to be cashing a cheque at a banking-house in Lombard Street
Miss Clack has made several mentions of wealth, poverty and other financial concerns. It seems that she correlates her narrative with economic status or financially related events, such as chasing a check. I would be interested in doing a frequency count to see how often these types of terms are used in her narrative compared to the others.