Persuasion: ‘loving longest, when existence or when hope is gone’

  • Ashley Tauchert
Part of the Language, Discourse, Society book series (LDS)

Abstract

It has to be said that Emma and Anne achieve their narrative function as pretty passive recipients of the ‘complete truth’ — and the truth of their present and future ‘perfect happiness’ — in the form of an unexpected message of love. Their particular narrative purpose, the one that is ‘risked’ and found safe in the end, is to receive and ‘understand’ the message that they are loved: ‘On the contents of that letter depended all that this world could do for her!’492 They are quiet recipients in their scenes of revelation.493 Yet Anne’s receptivity is productive of one of the most plausible and beloved happy endings available in the realist tradition. This ending turns on the possibility of the endurance of love against all the odds, and the key to Anne’s release is a message of love that has been risked and then found safe after all.

Keywords

Fatigue Catalysis Assure Arena Lost 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

  1. 490.
    P.B. Shelley, On Love’ [1818], in Duncan Wu, Romanticism: An Anthology (Oxford: Blackwell, 1994), pp. 860–1.Google Scholar
  2. 530.
    Riley, Denise, The Words of Selves: Identification, Solidarity, Irony (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2000), p. 147.Google Scholar
  3. 531.
    Peter Childs, Reading Fiction: Opening the Text (Houndmills: Palgrave, 2001), p. 29.Google Scholar
  4. 538.
    Ronald Carter and John McRae, The Routledge History of Literature in English: Britain and Ireland (London: Routledge, 2001), p. 238.Google Scholar
  5. 543.
    Lacan, Feminine Sexuality: Jacques Lacan and the ‘Ecole Freudienne’ (trans.) Jaqueline Rose (London: Macmillan, 1982). See, also Lacan’s argument that ‘Love is essentially deception’, in Jacques Lacan, The Four Fundamental Concepts of Psychoanalysis, trans. Alan Sheridan (London: Hogarth, 1977), p. 268. Quoted in Anthony Easthope’s discussion, The Unconscious (London and New York: Routledge, 1999), pp. 67–8.Google Scholar
  6. 544.
    Luce Irigaray, The Way of Love (London: Continuum, 2002) introduction.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Ashley Tauchert 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ashley Tauchert
    • 1
  1. 1.University of ExeterUK

Personalised recommendations