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Emma : Vintage Classics - Jane Austen

Emma

Vintage Classics

By: Jane Austen

Paperback | 30 August 2007 | Edition Number 1

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"The real evils, indeed, of Emma’s situation were the power of having rather too much her own way, and a disposition to think a little too well of herself" - Emma, Jane Austen

Emma is young, rich and independent. She has decided not to get married and instead spends her time organising her acquaintances’ love affairs. Her plans for the matrimonial success of her new friend Harriet, however, lead her into complications that ultimately test her own detachment from the world of romance.

About the Author

Jane Austen's life was, on the surface, uneventful and serene, but her works reveal a mind of enormous vitality and scope, and a powerful understanding of human behaviour. Bom on December 16,1775, in the Hampshire village of Steventon where her father was a rector, she grew up in a lively, affectionate family, who were (she recalled) "great novel- readers." In rural Hampshire, among the minor landed gentry and country clergy so perfectly portrayed in her work, she wrote and anonymously published Sense And Sensibility (1811), Pride And Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814), and Emma (1816).

She never married, and she ignored literary circles, ridiculing the popular Gothic novel and rejecting the tenets of Romanticism. Northanger Abbey and Persuasion were published after her death on July 18,1817. Jane Austen described her own writing as a "little bit of ivory" and maintained that "three or four families in a country village is the very thing to work on."

These self- deprecatory remarks understate the universality of her concerns and the largeness of her most prevalent theme: the need for men and women to find self- awareness and identity while accepting, out of necessity, the powerlessness and dependency which society so often confers upon them. Her flawless prose, displays such shrewd wit, delicate irony, and accomplished.
Industry Reviews
"Austen's characters are unquestionably one key to her greatness. Her understanding of the human heart is forensic and also frosted with the necessary detachment that gives deeper meaning to her rendering of human frailty. In Emma, Jane Austen shows us the halting development of an adolescent girl from perky narcissism to something approaching empathy" Guardian "It is the cleverest of books. I especially love the dialogue - every speech reveals the characters' obsessions and preoccupations, yet it remains perfectly natural...absolutely gripping" -- Susannah Clarke "Jane Austen is my favourite author! Shut up in measureless content, I greet her by the name of most kind hostess, while criticism slumbers" -- E.M. Forster "The wit of Jane Austen has for partner the perfection of her taste" -- Virginia Woolf "Like Irvine Welsh, I am a great admirer of Jane Austen" -- Alexander McCall Smith

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