First Impressions In Jane Austen's Persuasion

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Ezekiel 28:17 “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor.” The world is made of first impressions and has been for as long as organized society has been around. This is usually based on family lineage, appearance, wealth, and intelligence. Jane Austen challenges this notion in her last work, Persuasion. She makes this clear by introducing characters in a very matter of fact form, and then contradicting her description with their dialogue and actions throughout the rest of the novel undeniably making reference to the idea that first impressions are not only a waste of meditation but are also usually quite off. The story of Persuasion is focused around the issues that surround…show more content…
Elliot was well liked and quite agreeable. “He was quite as good –looking as he had appeared at Lyme,” thought Anne when she was reacquainted with him at her house in Bath, “his countenance improved by speaking, and his manners we so exactly what they ought to be, so polished.” Her immediate first impression was one that most would thrive to achieve, and he kept up this impression for quite a long while before Anne learned of his true intentions from Mrs. Smith, showing Anne that “Mr. Elliot,” was, “ evidently a disingenuous, artificial, worldly man, who has never had any better principle to guide him than selfishness,” (Page…show more content…
According to Forbes.com, “leaders are more likely to be hired if they’re tall. And that job candidates with African-American sounding names on their resume are less likely to get interviewed.” They also state that, “While our instinctive, immediate judgments can be helpful, we need to make sure we check our emotional responses with thought and reason. Although this is not stated in Persuasion as directly as in the Forbes article, it makes references to the same notion. Anne, the protagonist, is one of the only characters that consistently takes into account both her emotional, and logical responses. Jane Austen shows the reader examples of how to correctly judge first impressions and ones impressions made after. She shows the reader that family lineage, appearance, and wealth are not what one should take into consideration when concluding their opinion on someone. For sometimes it is because of ones beauty, charm, and place in society that can turn them sour if they are not
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