Lady Chatterley's Lover

Lady Susan and the Woman as Temptress   College

Jane Austen’s Lady Susan novel is one of her most decadent Victorian novels which challenges mainstream morality through its protagonist Lady Susan herself. As the epistolary novel proceeds, the written exchanges among the character demonstrate indignation at Lady Susan’s contrariness: her flirtation, extramarital affair, machinations, lies, hypocrisy, and determines slander turns the family with whom she lives upside down. During the course of the book, Lady Susan runs amok as her plots thicken and seem to come to definite fruition. Fortunately, at the end the moral voice of the omniscient author interposes and hands down justice to each one of the characters. Austen uses the voice of Mrs. Vernon as the voice of reason and morality to condemn Lady Susan’s behavior and to reason which those blinded by her manipulations. Mrs. Vernon lifts her voice as the voice of reason in the novel where she refuses to excuse or dilute Lady Susan’s excesses. With the womanly intuition of her she is able to unveil Lady Susan’s true character although many of the characters’ eyes are closed to it.

“So Lady Susan is the temptress manipulating men and employing personal charms” (Byrne). As a consummate temptress, Lady Susan entices the willing men...

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