British citizens panicked as the parliament enacted the Restriction Act of 1797. The act “had an economic impact upon everyone living in Britain at the time as it called into question the value of paper money” (Craig 144). Many members of society were worried that the economy would break down and the bank would leave them with useless paper money. The solution to this problem was to marry their plethora of children off to wealthy suitors who not only possessed copious amounts of paper money, but also held generous acres of land and metals with no value depreciation. In the event that the panic was a false alarm, which it later turned out to be, the wealth from paper money would provide protection, security and at the very least a sustainable living. Austen creates a compelling example of the type of parent who basically sells of their children for a better advancement in life in General Tilney from Northanger Abbey. General Tilney listens to John Thorpe’s exaggeration “of the [Morland] family as yet more wealthy than his vanity and avarice had made him believe” and blindly trusts in Thorpe because he wants to believe this is true (Austen 229). General Tilney then ...
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...ce and monetary status. Austen includes the foils of the society she observes and the actual characters that represent her polite society to communicate her economic theme of monetary wealth and high status in humanity negatively influencing the world of polite society.
Austen, Jane. Northanger Abbey. New York: Barnes & Noble Classics, 2005. Print.
Babb, Howard S. “Northanger Abbey.” Jane Austen’s Novels: The Fabric of Dialogue. Columbus: Ohio State UP, 1962. 88-98. Print.
Craig, Sheryl. “Northanger Abbey: Money in the Bank.” Persuaions: The Jane Austen Journal 32 (2010): 144-153. Literary Reference Center. EBSCO. Web. 22. Oct. 2013.
Gooneratne, Yasmine. “Northanger Abbey.” Jane Austen. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1970. 52-57. Print.
Herbert, David. “Place and Society in Jane Austen’s England.” Geography. 76.3 (1991): 193-208. JSTOR. Web. 23 Oct. 2013.
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