Date of Award

2003

Degree Name

Humanities

College

College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree

M.A.

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

Joyce E. East

Second Advisor

Arline R. Thorn

Third Advisor

Reidun Ovrebo

Fourth Advisor

Barbara E. Ladner

Abstract

This thesis incorporates information from recent biographies, feminist studies, and scholarly interpretations focusing on Jane Austen's narrative strategies. Such incorporation of material provides a context for understanding the significance of Austen's contributions to the novel form and illuminating the development of the female narrative voice. It focuses on Emma, Austen's last novel published during her lifetime, as an exemplification of Austen's enunciation of a feminine perspective of life and vocalization of a growing female self-awareness - her powers of consciousness - through Emma. Of primary concern is Austen's use of narrative techniques enabling the reader to become intimately acquainted and empathetic with Emma; her use of irony and female perspective to create a sympathetic, non-traditional female character ideologically accepted by her reading public; and her ability to articulate a feminine consciousness through the evolution of Emma's character.

Subject(s)

Austen, Jane, 1775-1817 - Criticism and interpretation.