Clarissa Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Describe Mr. Lovelace's character as it has been revealed in Letters 1-10.

Lovelace's character as it has been revealed in the first ten letters is mixed. People say he's good except for seducing a lot of women. James doesn't like him, but we don't really know why. He gets impatient when Clarissa won't let him talk about love. He's used to having his way.

2. In letters 1-21, Clarissa's family tries to control her behavior. Discuss at least two of her family members and explain their motivations to behave the way they do toward her.

In letters 1-21, Clarissa's family members try to control her for different reasons. Clarissa's brother is motivated by greed and jealousy. He is angry because their grandfather left his money to her instead of him, and he's afraid that his uncles will do the same thing. By marrying her to Solmes, he hopes to keep anyone else from leaving their money to Clarissa instead of to him. Clarissa's mother, on the other hand, believes that her daughter should be obedient, just like she is, so her motives are somewhat better, even though the result is about the same.

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