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Word Count: 932
Sense and Sensibility In Jane Austens Sense and Sensibility there is a theme that runs along with males in the novel The first born sons are forced to deal with the promotions and abilities that come along with the laws of primogeniture yet even with all they get they do not lead an altogether happy life The men that are first-born are in fact too swayed by the power and obligation that comes with their estates In the novel the first sons are viewed in a negative light yet the second-born sons have less responsibility to be what society wants them to be and are allowed to be his own Although Edward Ferrars is a firstborn his mother disinherits him because of his lack of focus and ability to be all she wants him to be as John Dashwood remarks Robert will now to all intents and purposes be considered as the eldest son We know that Colonel Brandon is a second son because he has an older brother who married his old sweetheart Eliza many years before the novels plot begins And whereas these characters are the heroes of the novel all the eldest sons are cast in a negative light including John Dashwood Robert Ferrars and Colonel Brandons older brother In Austens day the eldest sons were the ones who inherited all the family property according to the laws of male primogeniture However in spite of these inheritance laws it is the second sons who ultimately find happiness in the novel thus they make content lives for themselves despite societal and financial constraints This conflict starts at the beginning of the novel but to his son and his sons son p 2 with John Dashwoods acquisition of the Norland estate After John receives the inheritance and the estate he is from then on viewed in a negative manner He is a weak man and is constantly influenced by his petty greedy and mean
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