Honors Theses

Date of Award

Spring 5-2-2021

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Department

English

First Advisor

Erin Drew

Second Advisor

Jason Solinger

Third Advisor

Scott MacKenzie

Relational Format

Dissertation/Thesis

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to examine the impact and use of sisters and sorority in the novels of Jane Austen, answering the question of how they are shaping the narratives of the stories. Focusing in particular on Pride and Prejudice, Persuasion, and Sense and Sensibility, I highlight the ways that Austen’s writing crafts plots that rely upon sisters to function. Austen also uses sister figures to reveal the characteristics of her main protagonists and to express the themes she is most concerned about within each story. I also show Austen’s pattern of affirming the value and importance of sisterhood through the descriptions of the happiness each of her heroines finds after marriage, all of which include an emphasis on sustained sorority. I argue that Austen’s novels are so dominated by sisters that these integral characters are the most important figures within these novels.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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