What is the point of view of the narrator in Sense and Sensibility?

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M.P. Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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The point of view of the narrator in Sense and Sensibility refers to the perspective under which the narrative is told depending on the events that surround the plot. In this case, the point of view comes directly from the perspective of Elinor, who is the heroine and main character of the story.

Although Sense and Sensibility conveys the experiences of many other characters including Elinor's younger sister, Marianne, we do not get as many particular introspective details about her such as thoughts or emotions. We do get those from Elinor, who is constantly analyzing situations throughout the story.

To illustrate, think how much easier it would have been for us, as readers, to predict Willoughby's actions if only we had had a chance to see what was going inside Marianne's head. We only know that she was in love, that she had hoped for an engagement, and that she was heartbroken after he left her. It was not until much later that we find out, through Elinor's inquiry, that Willoughby had never proposed to Marianne and that maybe Marianne had taken Willoughby much more seriously than she should have.

Contrastingly, we know everything that goes on in Elinor's mind, and we can certainly appreciate her feelings for Edward through all the obstacles that come in between them.

This being said, Elinor Dashwood is the main character of the novel, the heroine, and the character through which the narrator exposes the point of view of the story.

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