Essay about Emma Paragraph

Submitted By chengchengevan
Words: 695
Pages: 3

In the novel, Emma, Austen critiques the arrogant nature of elite groups that function in a rigidly defined society, governed by wealth and superficial values. Set in Regency England in the small town of Highbury, the composer explores the hierarchical class system and how social status was determined by a combination of family background, reputation and wealth. Emma is established as the embodiment of these respectable cultural values, subsequent of her father’s gentry, and their landownership. In the small society of Highbury, Emma’s social status is portrayed to be elevated and that “Highbury afforded no equals”. Being superior in status in her society, Emma is characterised as arrogant, and reflects the nature of the gentry. The vanity and pretentious nature of the elite groups in society are further epitomized through Emma’s voice, “the yeomanry are precisely the order of people with whom I feel I can have nothing to do”. Austen depicts her society as one strictly divided between social groups, separated by superficial factors of wealth and class. The distinct line between social groups is further defined, “a single women of good fortune, is always respectable, and may be as sensible and pleasant as anybody else”, emphasising the superficial values of family background and wealth. The composer seeks to challenge the lack of regard for quality traits such as intelligence and manners and explores how they are overruled by the cultural values governing society. Emma’s perspective of the social hierarchy of Highbury, “it was not for them to arrange the terms on which the superior families would visit them”, characterises her determination to withhold the current order of social status within the small town, and consequently the arrogance of elite groups and their desire to be respected and looked up to. Through her characterisation of Emma, and the values she embodies, Austen challenges the views of mainstream society, and the values they respected during Regency England.
Similar to Emma, in the movie Clueless, Heckerling critiques the arrogant nature of elite groups that function in a rigidly defined society, governed by wealth and superficial values. Clueless takes place during the late twentieth-century in America’s glamorous world of Beverly Hills, Los Angeles. Cher’s world is constructed as a consumerist society, governed by materialism and superficial values. Set in a typical American high school, cultural values of popularity and defined social groups can be clearly depicted, and one can draw similar parallels to Emma’s hierarchical class system. In the opening montage of the movie, the array of fast-paced cuts depicts teenagers shopping, and also highlights the public skin display in the way they dress. The opening sequence depicts twentieth century America, as a society that values image and…