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Analysis of Jane Austen

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Discuss the ways in which Jane Austen uses caricature to ridicule or point out the faults of a rigid class system in characters such as Sir Walter, Mr. Woodhouse, and Mr. Collins. Extend your explanation of these character's personalities and goals to those of one or two of today's politicians. Are there parallels between Mr. Woodhouse, for example, and members of the Congress or Legislature? Explain your Answer.

Jane Austen uses caricature to ridicule and to point out faults of the rigid class system of her day. We can look at Sir Walter Elliot from Persuasion, Austen’s last completed novel in 1816. Secondly poor old Mr. Woodhouse from Emma, written by Austen and published in 1815. Lastly Mr. Collins from Pride and Prejudice also written by Austen and published in 1813.
Sir Walter Elliot at first read comes off as pompous and vain. After finishing the novel I cannot seem to change my view of him and probably with good reason. “He maintains personal qualities that are abhorrent to Austen's protagonists. Selfish and self-absorbed, he is unable to think past himself and his own immediate desires. Yet Sir Walter is not at all evil or ill inclined; rather, he is comically ridiculous, a caricature of the old, titled class” (SparkNotesEditors).
Austen explains his vain character well in this one statement. “Vanity was the beginning and the end of Sir Walter Elliot's character; vanity of person and of situation. He had been remarkably handsome in his youth; and, at fifty-four, was still a very fine man. Few women could think more of their personal appearance than he did, nor could the valet of any new made lord be more delighted with the place he held in society. He considered the blessing of beauty as inferior only to the blessing of a baronetcy…” (Kindle Locations 25079-25082). I think Sir Walter’s goals were that in the same with most politicians it is hard to...

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