Saturday, May 02, 2020

On a comic comparing Austen and Hemingway

John Atkinson's comic quickly compares standard ideas about the feminine Jane Austen and the masculine Ernest Hemingway. But in Austen, sisterhood is far from always positive; etiquette is a mask for cruelty; there isn't much tea; status is as political as the "politics" in Hemingway; balls don't end in brawls but are full of verbal and psychological brutality; the novels end in marriages but only after broken engagements and rejected proposals; and war and military masculinity are pervasive. In fact, Austen explores all the themes associated with Hemingway here (even booze doesn't go untouched by her characters), and if he doesn't address "hers" themes, he's the more limited writer than Austen. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 2 May)

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