Virtue, Jane Austen and The Predicament

19 Sep

It’s late and I’m exhausted.  I visited a friend and we watched the BBC production of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility.  I think I’m in love with Emma Thompson.  Watching it affected me quite strongly with a desire towards a more virtuous existence but I feel so conflicted because I find in myself the germ of virtue but it doesn’t manifest itself in the manner of Jane Austen’s characters.  This doesn’t make me doubt either mine own virtue or that of Austen’s characterizations.  Essentially I think that no one acts with the propriety of her characters but it is completely conceivable that people would act that way she has them act, that is to say, Jane Austen knows human nature with the depth of a philosopher; Jane Austen is a philosopher.  To recognize the philosophic depth of Austen one only need the Nichomachean Ethics or here John Pascarella, a friend of mine from UNT, explain the similarities between Austen and Aristotle.  But what does that mean for me?  I do not have the means, none of us has the means either materially or socially, to exude such a virtuous and noble air.  I could live a stringently prudent life but would sacrifice the bulk of my social relations to do so and even then I would doubtfully acquire the material means for any magnanimous action.

So, in conclusion, I am frustrated.  Furthermore, I have a load of work to do tomorrow and little time in which to accomplish it.  With church in the morning and Constitution Day Dinner tomorrow evening, I will possess maybe four hours in which to work.  I could abstain from drinking any alcohol at the Dinner but that would be completely contrary to the nature of the event as I’m to understand it.  It will be a very St. John’s style social event, with drinking, an academic and patriotic lecture on the Constitution followed by the group singing of songs.  If I were to act with prudence it would be prudish and rather than strengthening the bonds between myself and the other politics students I would certainly set myself apart, but then I could work later that night.  I do know one thing for sure, I need to end this break-from-work-blog-post and return to reading.  I hope you’ve enjoyed your Saturday and that all is well.


Cole Simmons


5 Responses to “Virtue, Jane Austen and The Predicament”

  1. DragonBallPaul September 23, 2010 at 2:27 pm #

    Everytime I watch a BBC version of Jane Austen I fall in love with the lead male.

    To my credit Mr. Darcy is fucking awesome.

    Uhm… No homo.

    On another note, I mostly certainly enjoyed this particular Saturday – though I think you already knew that. Also we *are* boxing next time we see each other.

  2. Marie September 30, 2010 at 6:13 pm #

    Mr. Darcy’s character and Emma Thompson both are fair game to fall in love with.

  3. CrystalSpins October 9, 2010 at 6:20 pm #

    I’f you’re in love with Emma Thompson, I highly reccommend Kenneth Branaugh’s version of Much Ado Abough Nothing — and maybe Dead Again since you seem to have a thing for the past. Oh, and thell me what you think about the moviues after you see them!


    • Cole October 10, 2010 at 9:04 pm #

      Thanks, I definitely think it would be good to see Much Ado About Nothing.

  4. CrystalSpins October 11, 2010 at 1:35 pm #

    Benedict: I love nothing in the world so well as you. Is not that strange?

    Beatrice: As strange as the thing I know not. and yet believe me not. It were as possible for me to say that I love nothing in the world so well as you.

    I think you would do well with a woman like Beatrice. 😉

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