Tuesday, August 23, 2011

how to be a jane austen heroine

I'm going to be 100% honest with you here.  I tried desperately to read Jane Austen's works.  I bought the books, cracked them open more than once apiece, but in the end, I resorted to just watching the movies.  I think they make terrific films, but for some reason, I just can't get through her writing.  I still have a deep respect for what Jane Austen accomplished.  But I could't help but notice some common themes, so I decided to write my own list of "How to Be a Jane Austen Heroine."  Feel free to add any you may think of!  I'd be happy to add it to the post.

1.      Be the Black Sheep

Jane Austen’s heroines tend to be the outsider, whether in their families, in society, or both.  Aim to be different so that you may observe and pass judgment on everyone who comes your way.

2.     Be well versed in witticisms

If you are to be a proper leading lady in the Austen tradition, you must have a vast repertoire of clever comebacks for when you are slighted by other women, or flirting with your Mr. Darcy.  No true Austen heroine would ever be caught dead in an awkward silence.  She always knows what to say, so you must too.

3.    Fall in Love with an Unlikely Man

In order to find yourselves in a whirlwind romance filled with irony and melodrama, decide which young man in your life you hate most, and pursue him with a vengeance.  Of course, you mustn’t let anyone know that you truly love him, even though he is everything you dislike in a man.  You must wait until a crucial moment to reveal your true feelings.

4.   Adopt a Strict Moral Code

As a Jane Austen heroine, it is important that you adhere strictly to a suitable moral code.  Never compromise yourself for any man, or even your friends and relatives.  You must be suitably self-righteous in doing so, or else you may find yourself a secondary character.  And we wouldn’t want that.

5.     Be Related to a Gold Digger

Obviously, being the leading lady, you are too good and too clever to care only about what’s in a man’s wallet.  But that doesn’t mean that everyone around you feels the same way.  It is absolutely necessary that you be related to someone (most likely a sister or female cousin) that cares more about money than about a person’s character.  They will contrast with you nicely, making you look even more wonderful by comparison.  If you have no gold digging relatives, then I’m sure you can acquire a close friend of the sort.

6.     Have One or More Sisters

Unfortunately, this comes down to genes.  Don’t have any sisters?  Well, you’re out of luck.  I guess there’s no sisterly bonding by candlelight for you.  

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