- Sep 2017
By portraying Charlotte as a superior helpmeet who is more than Mr. Collins deserves, Austen hints that the distinction Elizabeth makes between full, scripted banality and empty, untrammelled elegance is a false one
Something a reader should question, however, is the context of Darcy's comment. Does he say this because it's truly how he feels, or because he wants a wife in Elizabeth, as well? Also interesting how because Darcy makes opinion of Charlotte as a wife, it becomes assumed as "correct"
The recognition of mediocrity exchanged by two characters, whom nineteenth-century readers recognized as “of superior order” to common novel characters, transfigures their self-consciously lacking public performances—his bad manners, her mediocre piano playing—into performances of intimacy, rather than class allegiance or simple dilettantism
Great point. Moe's description of Elizabeth and Darcy's connection through their "modern" misbehavior, as presented through narrative, addresses the points of her argument. However, this is quoted/paraphrased from a text (The Critical Review/Annals of Literature) from 1813, which I do not think is necessarily appropriate or relevant for such a modern (pardon the pun) article.