Bringing Jane Austen to the 21st Century
Kaitlin Saunders: A Modern Day Persuasion

How quick come the reasons for approving what we like!

Posted by Kaitlin Saunders in Blog on July 1, 2011

I’ve discovered something new about myself these last few months.  Although a self-expressed introvert who enjoys my private times of reflection, I like being around people.  I like the noise, the laughter–even if I’m just in the next room.  I find the presence of others soothing.  Growing up in a very close knit family where I was always surrounded by my parents and/or siblings, I find that sometimes I can’t bear the silence.  I’ve never been the life of the party type of girl, but I love observing people, interacting when addressed, but most of all–I love laughing.  I find some evenings when it’s just my husband and myself working away at our silent tasks that I’m more easily distracted and more likely to grow stir crazy if there isn’t something going on in the background.  My husband thinks it odd that I have to either have music playing or the television on.  He can go for hours with only the slight hum of the computer–but not me.  I think that’s why I long for a large family of our own someday.  Yes, the hectic life of mom might drive me mad at times, but there’s nothing like the buzz of being surrounded by the people you love.  

This leads me to ask myself though how I would have survived in the pre-stereo, pre-tv, basically pre-everything world of Jane Austen.  I complain to my husband from time to time that I was born out of time and find myself wishing there was a kind of time machine that would take us back to when I could wear beautiful dresses and share tea with our neighbors.  But how would I have dealt with the quiet life of a woman back then?  I guess there would have been only one solution: have a large family like most during that time.  Jane herself had 7 siblings and came from a close-knit family.  Even though she herself never married, it’s no wonder she and Cassandra were often off visiting their brothers who had children!

And then take a look at Jane’s novels.  Elizabeth had four sisters.  Emma, although practically an only child, had to meddle with others.  Fanny had eight siblings and then after moving in with the Bertrams inherited three more.  Elinor and Marianne had each other as well as their younger sister and half-brother.  Anne, although having two siblings, is not close to either and therefore lived a lonely life until Rick rescued her.  And Catherine had nine siblings.

Can anyone else relate to my dislike of silence?

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