31 May 2011
Theme Analysis of Northanger Abbey
The book Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen is about a girl named Catherine and her journeys through Bath and Northanger Abbey. Catherine allows herself to believe anything she is told or reads. In doing so, she causes herself to look like a fool in several situations. The theme of Northanger Abbey is foolishness and a lack of good sense will lead a person into problems.
Catherine’s lack of sense leads her towards several problems. Catherine is very trusting of people. For example, she will allow Isabella to influence her into agreeing that Mr. Thorpe will escort her instead of waiting to see if Mr. Tilney will show up again. She does not see Mr. Tilney later that night, and the problem begins to occur. Her problem will become wondering if she will ever see him again. Catherine must realize the effect that people have on her. She does not understand why Isabella wants to flirt with Frederick rather than be faithful to her brother, James. When Isabella visits the Tilneys with Catherine, Isabella finds herself loving the attention from Frederick. James calls off the engagement, and this saddens Catherine. She finds that her friendship with Isabella leads to trouble with her relationship with the Tilneys. Catherine is a gullible young lady who lets words in a book control her view of reality. Catherine enjoys reading the gothic novel Udolpho. She allows the novel to affect on her view of reality. Soon she is invited to stay at Northanger Abbey with the Tilneys, and on her way there she pictures what it will be like. She imagines it to be a scary place. Her daftness keeps her from truly understanding that the Northanger is not as she imagines it to be. Another example of her daftness would be when she sees the windows in the abbey. She pictures them to be in a more gothic fashion as General Tilney describes in a conversation, but they are not. In fact, the only thing that...