Emma

Meet Emma Woodhouse of Jane Austen's Emma. She’s a rich young woman with a good social life living in 18th-century England. We bet she has an awesome accent. So what could possibly be wrong with her, you may ask? Well, Emma can’t stop getting involved in other people’s love lives. Does Emma just matchmake for fun? Is she honestly trying to help her friends? Is she trying to escape her own issues? Watch the video, and keep your eye out for Emma and her cupid’s arrow.

19th-Century Literature19th-Century British Literature
AuthorAusten - Jane Austen
FormNovel
LanguageEnglish Language
LiteratureBritish Literature
ThemesFoolishness and Folly
Gender
Love
Marriage
Morality and Ethics
Respect and Reputation
Society and Class
The Home
Transformation
Wealth

Transcript

00:22

According to Jane Austen. . .

00:23

. . .it's also the home of a lovable, if slightly clueless, matchmaker.

00:28

No, not that one -- this one. Meet Emma Woodhouse.

00:33

She's got it all -- big bucks . . .

00:34

. . .looks. . .

00:35

. . .and a busy social calendar.

00:37

It would be real easy to hate on her. . .

00:40

. . .if only she wasn't so darn charming.

00:42

With that much going for the girl, we have to ask. . .

00:46

. . .why the heck does she spend most of her time getting all up in everyone else's business?

00:51

Is she just royally bored?

00:53

It is the 19th century after all. . .

00:57

. . . and she isn't exactly swimming in recreational options.

01:02

Without a job or a husband to take care of. . .

01:04

. . .she might be taking poor Harriet under her wing just to kill time.

01:08

Then again, she may just like messing with other people's lives.

01:12

When she tells Harriet to jump. . .

01:14

. . .Harriet jumps.

01:15

Sure, Emma might not strike you as being that calculating. . .

01:18

. . .but you never can tell. How about the fact that it's easier to solve

01:22

someone else's problems. . .

01:23

. . .than work on your own?

01:25

Emma says she never wants to get married. . .

01:29

. . .but maybe she gives out all that free advice. . .

01:32

. . .to cover up her own sorry love life.

01:37

Like most "in your biz" folks. . .

01:40

. . .Emma's heart is in the right place.

01:43

She cares about her friends. . .

01:44

. . .and thinks that she knows what's best for them.

01:47

Maybe she's just a girl who wants everyone to be happy. . .

01:50

. . .as long as they get happy following her advice.

01:53

So, is Emma just having fun. . .

01:56

. . .avoiding her own issues. . .

02:00

. . .or actually trying to help others? And will she ever be able to stop interfering?

02:11

And if she does, what's she going to do with all that time on her hands?

02:16

Shmoop amongst yourselves.