• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How and in What Ways does Jane Austen Show the Importance of Money in the Characters and Society of her Time Through her Novel, Sense and Sensibility?

Extracts from this document...


How and in What Ways does Jane Austen Show the Importance of Money in the Characters and Society of her Time Through her Novel, Sense and Sensibility? Money appears to be a main issue of Jane Austen's "Sense and Sensibility". It is interesting that throughout the plot of the novel money seems to be the central issue. Affecting all the characters, it is money which pushes the plot, influences the choice of husband and marriage, establishes a place in society, seems to be influential in happiness and affects honesty and morality in characters. . Money always appeared to be a problem for the Dashwoods. They were constantly complaining about their lack of it, "my mother will never have money enough to attempt it", a quote from Elinor complaining about not having the money to improve the cottage. Austen uses money as a glue to hold the plot together; it follows the story and supports any gaps in the storyline. There is always a presence of money lingering in the atmosphere of the story, as there are many aspects of the novel where money has a definite link. The subject of money pushes the plot forward; For example, Mr. Willoughby left Marianne for a wealthier woman so Marianne needed to pick herself off the ground and move on to another stage of her life because she had lost her first love to money. ...read more.


His personality and physical appearance were ignored and the money was the only thing the Dashwoods focused on. "Edward Ferrars was not recommended to their good opinion by any peculiar graces of person or address. He was not handsome, and his manners required intimacy to make them pleasing. He was too diffident to do justice to himself." Marriage was very important for women of Austen's time so that there was a man at the woman's side to keep her financially stable. There were mistakes made by certain people in the book where greed was mistaken for love. Mr. Willoughby was madly in love with Marianne Dashwood, but he married another because Marianne's family was suffering from financial difficulty whereas the woman he married was profoundly rich. He was forced into a marriage that he would have been happier without because he was tricked by the power of money over love, which he later regretted. This shows how money can do damage. It caused hurt and regret of both Willoughby and Marianne. Money can make people selfish and greedy. It causes deceit in some cases, which leads to unhappiness. It is frightening how money can sometimes have the power to control people. John Dashwood was considering "to take three thousand pounds from the fortune of their son" and offer it to his stepmother and half sisters, the Dashwood family. ...read more.


If all the characters in "Sense and Sensibility" had used Marianne's view point the atmosphere would be pleasanter for the characters would be contented without having to worry about their social status, having no need to deceive others, having an opportunity to marry the person whom one truly loved and caring for others with others caring of them too. Using Marianne's viewpoint we can conclude that money, despite it's importance in the novel does not bring happiness. When one focuses on money one's emotional surroundings will collapse leaving money as the only possession. Money can buy and repair one's concrete desires but it cannot repair or renew the emotional surroundings that were once present but were ignored so faded out for good. Mr. Willoughby could relate to this. The characters of "Sense and Sensibility" were looking for the answers to all of their problems in money. They did not realize that they were looking in all the wrong places until they followed their heads and hearts and gained what they were looking for in love. All that they were searching for was happiness and the fortunate ones discovered that money can only buy a higher social status and a grand piano, which can not compare to happiness and love. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Jane Austen section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Jane Austen essays

  1. An analytical essay on the social context of "A sense & sensibility" by Jane ...

    Mr John Dashwood's wife however was not happy about this, and tried to persuade him to give as little as possible to the three daughters. "How could he answer it to himself to rob his child, and his only child too, of so large a sum?"

  2. Discuss the Relationship between John and Elizabeth Proctor and its Presentation. In What Ways ...

    The audience may be moved by Elizabeth's strength. Elizabeth says, "I cannot judge you, John." She is not trying to influence him; she wants him to do what he himself wants. Directly after, John says, "I would have your forgiveness, Elizabeth".

  1. In the poem, Passed On written by Carole Satymurti, the poet illustrates the importance ...

    This stanza creates a sense of closeness between the author and her mother because "the cards looked after [her]" and her mother "rendered herself down from flesh to paper" to be "there for [her] in every way she could anticipate."

  2. Morals and Manners in Jane Austen

    This recognition of our mistakes is proof of good morals and is why Emma is still a heroine (unlike Mrs Elton and Mr Collins, who do not realise their mistakes). Likewise, Wentworth does not always have the impeccable manners which Anne attributes to him.

  1. How does Jane Austen present the themes of love and marriage in the novel ...

    It is here that Austen makes the distinction between wealth and status. Miss Hawkins is wealthy, but the source of this wealth is important. Her family's fortune comes from a somewhat disreputable trade industry, not from the ownership of property.

  2. Argue that the theory of common sense structures provides an important and hitherto unappreciated ...

    many later psychologists have been interested, rather, in those naive-physical beliefs which stand out as being false).(5) Gibson J. J. Gibson's investigation of the world of basic affordances for human action consists in the attempt to establish a new descriptive standpoint which would pick up `facts at a level appropriate for the study of perception'.

  1. Polar opposites in 'Sense and Sensibility

    She would have been ashamed to "(rise) from her bed in more need of repose than when she lay down with it." Elinor did nothing of the sort when Edward left. Instead of "leaving the house in determined solitude to avoid (her family)," like Marianne did, Elinor took more of

  2. Sense and Sensibility.

    In this extract the only time we see both Elinor's and Marianne's reaction to the same situation is during the party. In this part of the extract both Marianne and Elinor see Willoughby and they both realise that Willoughby is ignoring Marianne.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work