View Full Version : Mansfield Park

11-07-2002, 02:00 AM
While Fanny may appear "insipid" to many readers (if not all!), it is important to remember that she was forced to abide by the Bertram's rules, for fear of being thrown out of the home. She was an outsider, taken in by the "goodness" of the family, and that put her in a precarious position - either play by their rules, or go back to the extreme poverty of her birth family.<br><br>I do agree, though, that Elizabeth or Emma (or even Mary Crawford) have much more fire and vivacity, so that makes it hard to switch gears and read about a main character like Fanny.<br><br>The way I see it, the whole book is a play, and though Fanny protests that she cannot act, she really is the best actress of them all. She keeps her feelings and opinions inside her, letting the reader only access them through Austen's free indirect style. I think it's that duality that exists in all these characters - the real versus the roles they play - that makes this such a fascinating book.

05-24-2005, 06:07 PM
Although this exeptional novel allows the reader to appreciate the changing times in which the stately mansion and its' occupants lived, the character of Fanny Price is frustratingly insipid and her reserved and mouse-like character leave me yearning for the fire and wit of Emma or Elizabeth Bennet.