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Intertextual Connections In "Letters To Alice And "Pride And Prejudice

1531 words - 7 pages

Through the exploration of intertextual connections, how does your understanding of the context, purpose and audience of Letters to Alice help shape your understanding of Pride and Prejudice? In your response examine the ways in which different contexts can influence a composers choice of language forms and features and the ideas, values and attitudes conveyed in their texts.’

Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” and Fay Weldon’s “Letters to Alice on First Reading Jane Austen” explores a range of intertextual connections through their understanding of context, purpose and their targeted audiences. Both authors have a formal yet witty approach to their novels by using a range of techniques ...view middle of the document...

Weldon empathizes with Austen’s omniscient third person point of view with the influence of her own context through a non-fiction/informative and epistolary style unlike Austen who writes “Pride and Prejudice” in a Neo Classic and Romanticist fiction style. Weldon’s purpose is also like Austen’s to express point of view particularly those on marriage and the importance of literature.
The purpose and context of both authors is targeted toward their suited audiences. Austen wrote for the people of her time which is identifiable through her understanding of styles and opinions that she expresses through her main protagonist, Elizabeth Bennet. Weldon employs Alice as a linkage to a child of the modern age to convey her ideas and points of view both similar and indifferent to those of Austen whilst recognizing her own 20th century language features to maintain interest from the reader. Through her extended metaphor the “City of Invention” Weldon evokes intense imagery for her audience of a city filled with all aspects of different dimensions. She uses this to explain what is to a modern “child” who reads literature as monotonous as Alice does on reading “Pride and Prejudice”: “trying to define literature by what it does , not by what it is”. By experience, not idea”
Austen uses indirect and direct conveyance of each characters consciousness (as a language form of a narrative). This character is the protagonist/ heroine and is emphasized through the character of Elizabeth and in “Letters to Alice”, it is narrator Fay Weldon who utilize an epistolary form- “Pride and Prejudice having 15 letters to convey this consciousness through for example, Mr. Collins in his letter addressing the Bennet family and “Letters to Alice” being an entirely epistolary form addressed to Alice from Aunt Fay. From this perspective, the audience can empathize and identify with their stream of thought. Through each archetype we can also uncover emotions and events that might not be involved with the main protagonist. For example “Pride and Prejudice” does not make account of Darcy between his proposals to Elizabeth to leave the audience, like Elizabeth, uncertain of his motives. However at the beginning of the book Austen does ensure that Darcy has spontaneous accounts of his emotions to remind the audience of his growing love for Elizabeth. Phrases that highlight this are “She was becoming an object of some interest” and “her figure was light and pleasing”. Weldon also uses a didactic conveyance through her direct letters to Alice. This provides a sense of passing and provides a structure for ideas.
Irony and the use of humor is a frequent technique that occurs through Austen’s comedy of manners. She satirically explores social manners and attitudes of the context and the characters. This is evident when Mr. Collins proposes to Elizabeth and when Lady Catherine de Bourgh confronts Elizabeth. The novel also recognizes sub genres of irony including dramatic, verbal and...

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