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Mansfield Park

By Jane Austen

“…for Edmund was no longer the dupe of Miss Crawford.”

– Jane Austen

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Book Summary

Genre:

Classic Literature

Themes:

Family and Home, Morality, Vice and Virtue, Steadfastness, Financial Security, Social Class, Faith, Patience, Womanhood and Gender

Ages:

13 years +

Storyline:

Mansfield Park is a character-driven story about family relationships, the ups and downs of it, and what character traits one hopes to find in a spouse to secure a good marriage match.

The story begins with young Fanny leaving the only home she’s ever known to go to Mansfield Park to live with one of her Mom’s sister Lady Bertram and her husband Sir Bertram. Upon moving in with the Bertram clan Fanny is very weak, reticent, and lonely, but Edmund befriends her, takes her under his wing, and helps quell the loneliness, making Mansfield feel more like home. A strong friendship and admiration between Edmund and Fanny commences.

Though Fanny becomes more acquainted with her new lifestyle, home and family she is not treated as an equal to the Bertram girls and often spends her time waiting on Lady Bertram or keeping quietly to herself, however mischief and troubles arise amidst a scandalous play that is in the works. Flirtations and emotions are rampant as everyone is seemingly wanting to be with someone who is not good for them. Fanny appears to be the only one that is unbiased and unaffected, having morals that she respectfully holds onto, and can clearly see through all of the games and pretense.

This is a witty novel that is rich in social commentary and explores themes of social class, morality, and womens roles within society; the story satisfyingly concludes with every character getting their “just deserts”.

Content Warning:

There is mention of a married woman running off with a man who is not her husband, but there are no details expounded upon.

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