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Literary Elements in Persuasion by Jane Austen


Persuasion is one of the novels that displays a mature story, as well as the leading characters in this novel, are slightly wiser as well as older. The most adult character in the novel is Anne Elliot, who is twenty-seven years old. At the beginning of the story, she was indeed so happy with Frederick Wentworth. But her friend influenced her as well as persuaded her to break off the commitment. Her friend wants to break the relationship with her due to certain reasons that are necessary to spend a life. Her friend convinced Anne Elliot to end the relationship and that he had no titles as well as no connections (Austen, Persuasion). Anne feels a deep regret due to this breakup. She does not want to end the relationship with Wentworth. She also rejected her second proposal. Then, she realizes that she loves Wentworth. However, She feels regret to see Wentworth as a successful captain as well as a rich man. At this moment, the family of Anne was facing financial problems. The whole story of the novel creates tension between Wentworth and Anne in the reader that they will be joined up in their love or not.


Following are the themes of novel persuasion:

Class and Society

There are social mobility and class inelasticity subjects that are the primary point of attention in this novel. As Frederick Wentworth became rich as well as well-off through successful captain. The focus on the naval profession shows the way to develop as well as enhance the social class. Austin is a type of person who cares for traditions as well as values that are necessary to maintain and improve social structure (Davis). The role of the navy is progressively growing class flexibility has been discussed in this story that has domestic virtues.


In this persuasion novel, the theme of marriage is the primary point. Though Wentworth and Anne have affection for each other. But the relationship breaks off due to financial status (Austen, Making Sense of Persuasion! A Students Guide to Austen’s (Includes Study Guide, Biography, and Modern Retelling)). In this novel, the character wants to get both kinds of benefits and think about marriage as well as financial benefits. Marriage is another concept to enhance social class that shows in the story.


This main theme displays the conversation between Anne and her friend. Lady Russell influenced Anne not to get married to Wentworth. Her friend said that the match was not good enough. As Wentworth had no fortune or titles.


Navy as a theme is satirized in the story while showing a high class of naval men. All the characters are unaffected, open, sensible as well as proficient in providing good company other than Captain Benwick (Austen, Persuasion). There are other practical skills that are explained and, later on, become crucial due to the falling of Louisa at Cobb. Thus, Austen composes at a moment when the high class was failing progressively. On the contrary, the navy was rising due to the rise of the Subsequent British Empire. In the meantime, Crofts takes ownership of Kellnch Room due to the shift in social order. It is the novel in which there is no sign provided for Elliots when she will be capable of going from Bath. In the end, the ultimate goal of the story is to give success to Captain Wentworth with a shiny future to spend life with Anne. And that successful worthy status remains with the navy.

Silly Parents

The role of silly parents in persuasion is also very significant and worthy. The profligacy and insensible indulgence of Sir Walter is a reason for conflict that impels the Elliots to leave their family unit. In the same way, Sir Walter is not a person who can guide his offspring. He is so futile as well as a self-involved person. He transferred his ridiculousness and absurdity to both Mary and Elizabeth. As a result, Elizabeth is the kind of person who shares his self-importance and big-headedness. On the other side, Mary considers the whole thing a bit personal and full of self-pity. Her kids are wild as well as uncontrollable. She does not take an interest in educating them. She does not care to teach them as well. On the other hand, Anne is a character that has wisdom along with good understanding. It can be assumed from these lines that children are more alike when their parents have a ridiculous or irresponsible nature. It is also a consistent and core theme of the novel (Austen, Making Sense of Persuasion! A Students Guide to Austen’s (Includes Study Guide, Biography, and Modern Retelling)).

The Changing Ideal of Gentleman

Persuasion novel shows a picture of two different forms of English gentleman. On one side, there is Sir Walter, who is a high-minded man, a land-owning as well as a traditional sort of person. He acts like a person who does not want to work and tries to find comfort. On another side, there are two individuals that are Admiral Croft and Wentworth. These individuals are naval officers who make an effort to work and make their luck as well as wealth. In this way, their manners are spotless and perfect. They do not look like Sir Walter. Thus, the history of a gentleman was developing in this era. In this way, the novel also shows that change. (Austen, Persuasion: By Jane Austen – Illustrated)

Separate Spheres

There is a nineteenth-century principle according to which two spheres of life are domestic and public. It is considered that male has a responsibility to cover the public area. Also the female will take the responsibility of the private domain. This novel argues the concept of separate spheres by presenting the Crofts. It is a case of an ideal, happy marriage in which Mrs. Croft and her husband share each domain of life. He feels so glad to divide the responsibilities and duties of each other. As a consequence, Mrs. Croft goes with her partner on his boat. In this way, the Admiral is glad to support his partner in the household tasks around the house. They have enough strong partnerships to divide the duty of driving a carriage. However, Austen encounters the dominant idea of distinct spheres in this novel.

Poetry and Reading

There are most of the persons in a novel who are fond of reading. As Sir Walter states, his family ancestry. As well as records of naval are read by Captain Wentworth. There are also Russell and Anne, who enjoyed a great deal of reading. There is also Benwick, who can orate lines of passionate poetry. In addition to, Anne considers the poetry that enhances nature as well as acts as a special form of entertainment. According to her, poetry has enough capacity to take away from this world. Due to this, everything disappears in front of a person. It helps to mesmerize a person. On the other hand, these books are unable to provide a sense of superior sensibility to Mary.


It is a significant point to remember the previous lovers that are discussed in persuasion. It can be observed in the case of Captain Benwick, where he laments the loss of his fiancée. It is assumed as unsuccessful but respectful and honorable at the same moment. As well as Harville also anticipates Benwick to think of his sister for a longer period. Even though Harville does not argue when Captain Benwick decides to engage with Lousia. This story shows that remembrance is not only applied to death, but it applies to all those individuals who are in distant places.

Place and Location

There are various locations discussed in Persuasion. There is a titled respectable family at Kellynch. As well as, there is a shifting societal order at Uppercross. On the contrary, there is a modest wealthy, and happy family that is found at Lyme. It can also be observed life with full of dangers and fruits at Bath. In this way, there is full coverage of all worlds. It is a novel that shows the big picture of all societies. However, Anne adores the calm parks of Kellynch in the same as she fixes the commotion of Uppercross. According to her eyes, there is no difference between Westgate Buildings and Camden Place. The only thing that is important and significant for her is the people who reside in those places.

Rank and Consequence

There is a significant importance of rank and consequence in front of Elizabeth and Sir Walter. They are alive to be imperative in the community. Sir Walter is in the position of the baronet. While Elliots has financial problems due to inadequate income (Austen, p. 40). Therefore, they left their most important house of Kellynch Hall as well as traveled to Bath. However, Elliots has enjoyed the company of others at Bath. Mr. Eliot decided to get married to a well-off common woman as an alternative to Elizabeth, specifically due to the dwindling Elliot’s fortune. As a final point, there is the affine line between obsession and vanity of family. Also, Lady Russel has a greater understanding of this matter, but at some point, she gives too much value to the rank. On the other side, Anne gives importance as well as judges people by their character as a replacement for rank.


It is a story of manners. This novel does not discuss the growth or education of one certain person but does an alternative discussion of how a small number of dominant characters act together in a society. As well as how these individuals state structures and rules which direct their lives. This novel provides a good sense of classic romance as true lovers cut up and then joined up.

As well as there is melancholy and dissatisfaction in the situation between Benwick and Anne. There is quite a laughter and enjoyment as Sir Walter did or said.


Austin finished his last work by using a tone of melancholy, sad, and plaintive. At the age of twenty-seven, Anne missed her true sweetheart. Her friend induced her to break the relationship. When the story of the novel starts, then it shows that Anne survives with sensible, calm, resignation, and patience. She was living a life as the best part of it. She reliefs and comforts herself with serving others, taking walks as well as reading poetry. In this way, she feels happy to help others. What she had done in her life, she senses the long-lasting feeling of regret. The novel also discusses second chances. Captain Wentworth turned the story about finding success as well as fulfillment by being a sager, mature, and sadder man. The humor in persuasion is more depicts a picture of the reality show. In the case of Sir Walter, his character is as ridiculous man. On the other hand, he suffered a lot of loss in his life of Anne. The role of Captain Benwick is a little dramatic. But then again, his sadness is real and genuine due to missing his fiancée. He feels sad as well as depressed when he lost her fiancée. However, the novel lets the reader laugh by balancing these two tones. The story of persuasive is a bit satirical as well as slightly subversive.

The storyteller follows deeply the troubles of Anne Elliot. On the other hand, he ridicules the affectations as well as the big-headedness of her high-class noble family. At the beginning of the novel, the ironic tone is set with the mocking description of Walter. Therefore, Jane Austin builts her stand on pride as well as vanity through the ridicule of Sir Walter. It is the place where the reader realizes the weakness in the community through the character of Sir Walter. There is also the fun of making the character that James Austen displays in Persuasion. But Jane Austen barely ever mimicries Anne. Sometimes, Anne amuses and pleases at her weaknesses. In the meantime, It is the primary way of irony. Jane Austen focuses the attention of the reader on the normality of the Musgrove sisters at the moment when she explains that having wholly the standard of accomplishments. In the same way, there are also different moods as well as an indecisive view of Mary that are amusing. Jane Austin uses other options to create irony in The Persuasion. It is commonly generated when one thing is supposed and another meaning if this statement can be taken out of it. As a result, it creates a comic effect in the story that mesmerizes the reader while reading. At the start of the novel, the narrator calls a good father to Sir Walter. But the reader knows very well that the narrator wants to make this statement sarcastically. Hence, the whole tone of the novel is mournful and melancholic as compared to other novels written by Austen.

Works Cited

Austen, J. Making Sense of Persuasion! A Students Guide to Austen’s (Includes Study Guide, Biography, and Modern Retelling). Golgotha Press, 2013,

Persuasion. Ward, Lock, Bowden & Company, 1891,

Persuasion., Limited, 2009,

Persuasion: By Jane Austen – Illustrated. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform,

Davis, K. E. Liberty in Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Lehigh University Press, 2016,



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