Austen - English 18th Century Novel Professor Freeman...

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English – 18 th Century Novel Professor Freeman Reaction Paper #4 12/07/2007 Austen and Feminism Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey is a novel ahead of its time because it addresses feminist issues while creating a new style, the gothic parody. Austen is making fun of the ridiculous formality, expectations and pressures of Gregorian English society. The eighteenth century was a repressive time and women had very little control over their lives and future, unless they were rich. The main character, Catherine Morland gets an invitation to go with family friends, the Allens, to Bath, an upscale British resort. Catherine is an avid fan of gothic novels and has a powerful imagination. So powerful in fact that it gets her into some trouble with her future husband, Henry Tilney, when he discovers her snooping around his father’s bedroom looking for evidence that the man is a murderer. This is an example of Catherine’s imagination running wild and it’s also a sign that Catherine wants more out of life.
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