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

'Jane Austen strongly emphasises the links between romance and finance: her attitude is always practical.'Considering the quotation and the critical view, explore the varying ways in which the writers present the significance of money in light of their

Extracts from this document...


"Is he married or single?" "Oh single, my dear to be sure! A single man of large fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine thing for our girls!" 'Jane Austen strongly emphasises the links between romance and finance: her attitude is always practical.' -Considering the quotation and the critical view, explore the varying ways in which the writers present the significance of money in light of their characters. At the time in which Austen was writing women were under enormous pressure to marry for the purpose of securing their financial futures. Therefore, marriage, though romanticised, was in many ways a financial transaction and social alliance rather than a matter of love. Although Jane Austen did not condone loveless marriages (she stayed single all her life), she did approve of matches having equality in various aspects, including wealth, social status, love and mind. Austen strongly believed in not marrying for the wrong reasons. With reference to money this meant that a person Austen would disapprove of would be someone who married purely for the gain of wealth. Perhaps those who are well of anyway, but want a greater financial security in life, or those who were of mediocre wealth who married for money to avoid being a poor spinster in later life. An example of someone who wishes to marry for money in 'Pride and Prejudice' would be Caroline Bingley. Caroline Bingley, by way of her brother's good fortune is a wealthy character, with a dowry of, "twenty thousand pounds" Her financial interest in marrying Mr. ...read more.


However we also hear Jane Austen's opinion on this matter later on when Mrs Gardiner advises Lizzy, saying, "Do not involve yourself, or endeavour to involve him in an affection which for the want of fortune would make so very imprudent." Later in life a woman would rely on her husband's income when her own dowry had run out. A man with little income had few prospects for a woman and so the match would be unwise and thoughtless. Austen presents the point here that it is difficult for a woman to find the line between marrying purely for financial gain and not being improvident and choosing a man without some money to his name. This is contrastable with the marriage of Jane Fairfax and Frank Churchill in 'Emma'. Frank Churchill disregards the fact that Jane has no money, and wishes to marry her nonetheless. This situation is portrayed by Austen through the use of her 'Cinderella plots.' This is a term used when a woman marries above their class, Jane, who is facing the threat of a life of, "penance and mortification" as a governess is saved by both the financial and social status of Frank Churchill. In these plots lines the woman is generally shown to be intellectually astute, so as to match up to her husband. Jane is extremely accomplished in music and manners as well as having a, "an excellent education. Living constantly with right- minded people and well- informed people, her heart and understanding had received every advantage of discipline and culture" this infers that Austen approved of this match, despite the fact that money has been disregarded in the relationship. ...read more.


Austen disapproves of this idea, perhaps not surprisingly so because in Regency England men were supposed to provide for the woman, as apposed to the other way around. This match is comparable to that of Mr and Mrs Elton. Mr Elton first proposes to Emma Woodhouse, a young woman with a thirty thousand pound dowry, when refused he looks for a alternate source of money. When Emma suggests that he might like Harriet, a poor and illegitimate woman with little money to her name. Eventually Mr Elton marries a woman named Augusta Hawkins, a woman with a ten thousand pound dowry. This shows that Mr Elton considered the gain of financial wealth through his choice of wife very important in the match. Jane Austen shows many different situations in which finance should affect your choice of who to marry. In many of these situations she frowns upon those who seek money through marriage, Mr Elton and Miss Bingley are fine examples of these people, and the irony with which their characters are portrayed shows the disdain that Austen feels towards them. However Austen also shows the foolishness of not considering finance in a match, pointing out that in later life a woman will be reliant on the wealth of the man that she has chosen to marry and so she should choose carefully. I believe that although Austen would like to frown on those who look for financial support over love she sees the sensibility and logic in doing so. Austen who remained single for all her life shows an insightful view to the problems of finance and romance in the 18t century. ...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. How does Jane Austen present the themes of love and marriage in the novel ...

    Emma plays matchmaker between Harriet and Mr Elton. She cannot assume her plans would go wrong. Harriet is so trusting in Emma that she cannot see the signals that Mr Elton gives. The novel is about the growth of Emma's knowledge. She uses high authority to make what she believes.

  2. Austen wrote that Pride and Prejudice is too light, and bright, and sparkling; it ...

    All though it is comic that characters keep their flaws it also makes the detrimental point that some people are doomed to pass life by in foolishness. The growth of other characters ensures our awareness that whist their faults were humorous they were wrong. This need for change adds shade.

  1. Compare and Contrast how Jane Austen Represents Social Class In Emma and Pride and ...

    Marriage is obviously a key theme in both novels, the numerous marriages in each tell us a great deal about how marriage was viewed in those days and how far social status could influence choice of partner. If we take the marriage of Charlotte and Mr.

  2. How and in What Ways does Jane Austen Show the Importance of Money in ...

    . . .. I would instantly pull Combe down, and build it up again in the exact plan of this cottage." For the Dashwoods, money can only be talked about among close friends through whom trust is conveyed, like Mr.

  1. An exploration of Jane Austen's use of the outdoors in Emma

    The chemistry between herself and Mr Wickham came to nothing, and in time she comes to realise her feelings for a man much more suited to her; the intelligent and honourable Mr Darcy. Austen seems to believe her heroines should choose lovers with their heads as much as with their hearts.

  2. The various portrayals of heroines in Jane Austen's novels as well as investigate, who ...

    Despite her apparent coldness Elinor is a likeable character and a true representation of the passive suffering heroine. Elinor in contrast to Marianne always remains good mannered, polite and selfless. She restrains her own sorrow in order to shield her mother and sisters.

  1. Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre - "love is like playing the piano. First you must ...

    Emma becomes moody and depressed at the sudden loss of a companion, as she is less concerned with Miss Taylor's new happiness than what she has just lost herself. But Emma is not fully to be blamed. Her father, Mr. Henry Woodhouse is partly the cause of Emma's attitude.

  2. Discuss the significance of the chapter titles of the novel in regard to theme ...

    As a title it touches the theme in a sense that mothers always want the best for their offspring, which is no different to the mother in this story. The best quality meaning the best quality of life that a mother can give her children.

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