When one is looking for a good dose of reality and common sense, there are few better places than a Jane Austen novel. Entertaining they are, but also scattered with drops of wisdom that run counter to our modern notions. For example, take the idea of “change” (often coupled with “hope”); today that idea is loaded with political activity and sexual diversion. But what really brings about change? As Miss Austen states in the first chapter of her novel Emma: “Matrimony [is] the origin of change.”
First, we need to be clear about what Miss Austen meant by matrimony. As a

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