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Emma, by Jane Austen
Emma , by Jane Austen , is a novel about youthful hubris and the perils of misconstrued romance. The story takes place in the fictional village of Highbury and the surrounding estates of Hartfield, Randalls, and Donwell Abbey and involves the relationships among individuals in those locations consisting of "3 or 4 families in a country village". As in her other novels, Austen explores the concerns and difficulties of genteel women living in Georgian — Regency England; she also creates a lively comedy of manners among her characters and depicts issues of marriage , gender , age, and social status. Before she began the novel, Austen wrote, "I am going to take a heroine whom no one but myself will much like. Emma , written after Austen's move to Chawton, was the last novel to be completed and published during her life,  as Persuasion , the last novel Austen wrote, was published posthumously.
She befriends Harriet Smith, a young woman of dubious parentage and no money and determines to improve her prospects. As part of this project, Emma decides to become a matchmaker between Harriet and the Reverend Mr. Elton, a vicar in the nearby town. Things, however, do not go as smoothly as she had imagined. The novel provides an insight into the distinctions in the rigid class structure of England in the Regency period, and the social barriers to marriage between persons considered to be of superior and inferior rank. It received a generally very positive reception, and was well reviewed though anonymously by Sir Walter Scott. Criticisms of the novel, such as they were, centered around its supposed lack of plot, though its treatment of character was recognized and applauded.
Beautiful, clever, rich - and single - Emma Woodhouse is perfectly content with her life and sees no need for either love or marriage. Nothing, however, delights her more than interfering in the romantic lives of others. But when she ignores the warnings of her good friend Mr Knightley and attempts to arrange a suitable match for her protegee Harriet Smith, her carefully laid plans soon unravel and have consequences that she never expected. With its imperfect but charming heroine and its witty and subtle exploration of relationships, Emma is often seen as Jane Austen's most flawless work. Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her. She was the youngest of the two daughters of a most affectionate, indulgent father; and had, in consequence of her sister's marriage, been mistress of his house from a very early period. Her mother had died too long ago for her to have more than an indistinct remembrance of her caresses; and her place had been supplied by an excellent woman as governess, who had fallen little short of a mother in affection.
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This term paper tries to work out the habits and social graces of the regency period by using the novel Emma. Emma by Jane Austen is a novel about a year-old girl living in the small town of Highbury, Surrey, in England. The novel deals with the relationships between the neighbours, the class differences and, typical for Jane Austen novels, marriage and match- making. In this paper, the aspects of family life, neighbourhood, manners and values in Emma and thus representatively for the English Regency period are to be portrayed. The main families and characters living in the neighbourhood of Highbury, a little town in England, are acquainted and visit each other regularly, whether these visits are happening out of the responsibility the upper class has towards the lower class Emma visits Mrs. Knightley visits Emma and Mr. Woodhouse at Hartfield.