The past two weeks have witnessed a downpour of chick-lit at this part of the world. I read 'Emma' with an almost embarrassing voracity(I am so excited about this entry I nearly typed veracity!).Jane Austen can be quite an addictive source of temptation to the loitering feminine mind.'Emma' had all the ingredients of the average chick-flick. There was romance,scandal,gossip,heartbreak,engagement and eventually matrimony.What sets Jane Austen apart from the others in her genre is her portrayal of romantic love.
Romance in the Victorian era comes across as a far cry from the blatant display of affection in present times.An arch of the eyebrow,a carefully crafted letter,a slight touch of the hand and a swift covert glance can mean so much more than the 'I like you,just the way you are' line from 'Bridget Jones' Diary'. A couple walking at a distance from the rest of a travelling party can set tongues wagging about the prospect of a wedding.A proposal is a subtle endeavour carried out after considerable deliberation. Proposals are rejected with the aid of polite letters of apology and misunderstandings are forgiven with all the appropriate terms of endearment.
The imminent danger in Jane Austen's work, lies in all the hidden innuendoes that wreak havoc in the minds of young,impressionable divas like yours truly.It is quite understandable why there are so many delusional 'maidens' waiting in distress for certain individuals known as 'knights' to rescue them.
ps: A little trivia here, 'Emma' was the inspiration for the mindless chick-flick 'Clueless' starring Alicia Silverstone. The resemblance between the two is indeed bizzare.