In my essay, I will be comparing the two short stories- ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ written By William Trevor and ‘The Three Sisters’ written by Jane Austen. Jane Austen wrote her story during the pre-twentieth century in the old 19th century England; whilst William Trevor’s story was written in the 20th century, set in Ireland.

Both stories show the concepts of marriages, how one feel towards it and how they react. Although the stories appear to be very similar, they are equally different. Jane Austen and William Trevor have two different backgrounds and feeling on marriage, they both see marriage in altered views, this is what sets the stories apart.

‘Teresa’s Wedding’ is built upon descriptions creating a sense of character and tone. We are shown this by, the way he speaks about the confetti “it lay thickly on the remains of the wedding cake, on the surface of the bar and the piano, on the table and on the two small chairs that the lounge bar contained’. William Trevor has described in elements of what lies beneath the words. Ingeniously, the depths of his words pull the readers to interpret very word to find out what is described subsequently. Moreover, the characters in ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ get developed through the description such as one of the brides sister, Loretta, is said to be ‘small and brown’. This gives us a picture of a quite, dull, petit and dark lady-, which William Trevor wants us to visualize.

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‘The Three Sisters’ unlike ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ is built up through the letters and dialogues as a sense of character. This is clearly shown by Mary Stanhope when she talks about herself getting married. The sense of her language pulls us towards her, to make us feel part of her, enhancing her feeling. Jane Austen does this by using the first person narrative, ‘I’ and the formal manner of her tone shows feeling and depth. “I am the happiest creature in the world, for I have received an offer of marriage from Mr Watts. It is the first time…” .We am shown that this is a young lady speaking via to the language she uses “it is my first time”. When writing to ‘Fanny’, phases such as’ I hate you’ are used, this shows personally emotion to the next character. Again, ‘I’ is used to show direct addressing.

An additional difference is that ‘The Three Sisters’ is a series of letters, which as a reader enhances that Mary Stanhope is trying to one over on her two sisters, Georgiana and Sophia.

On the other hand, ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ is a traditional story that works upon society and builds up to a escalating climax.

In ‘The Three Sisters’, as said before, Mary Stanhope is trying to one over her two sisters, also shows the Mary Stanhope does not value the meaning of love. Whilst reading ‘The Three Sisters’ we tend to feel that Mary Stanhope seems to be a young child in the body of a lady to an extent. Even though, she may be the eldest, Mary Stanhope seems to be very self-centred, judgemental and challenging. Within the passage itself, Mary has cleverly secreted the irony of humour, the reader has to unveil this as they read on.

Jane Austen makes Mary Stanhope’s character to have different sides to her as she is seemed to be intelligent in some ways however, it seems that she does not exactly know what she wants, her min changes often, we are shown this by her feelings towards Mr.Watts- “I hate him” and “I am the happiest creature in the world”. Contradiction is shown here which lends onto Mary Stanhope to being very judgemental and infantile. Mary Stanhope is also set up to be very materialistic as she is looking for pride, status and independence, which Mr.Watts has got. As being the eldest girl in the family, Mary Stanhope worries about her sisters getting married before her, this irritates her, and therefore she is more for looking at that then her happiness.

Being the eldest daughter does not mean that you have to be the first to get married sets the contrast between the two stories. ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ is based on the line of true love and its value. William Trevor tries to exemplify that even though couples may be going through rough times, it always works out in the end if the love is still there, we are shown this by Teresa cheating on Artie.

Both ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ and ‘Three Sisters’ unravel the irony gestures which are given in there stories. The importance of plot and tension are built up on the language of the two stories. ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ creates climax by the phases used such as when Father Hogan says “Isn’t it great that God gave the life”, as this is Teresa’s and Arties wedding day, they can only hope for the best, this is in satire to contrast to when Artie asking Teresa “Did Screw Doyle take you into the field” this creates a tense atmosphere giving an expanding climax.

‘Teresa’s Wedding’ and ‘The Three Sisters’ show similarities of irony occurring through the climax.

‘The Three Sisters’ shares mixtures of simple, compound, complex and varied sentence structures such as “He said he should come again tomorrow and take my final answer, so I believe I must have him while I can.” This sentence shows confusion and a sense of thought; this may be the affect that Jane Austen covets. Jane Austen creates a sense of excitement and depth when Mary believes that she should have Mr Watts-‘I believe that I should have him’.

After comparing both stories, we can observe that ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ and ‘The Three Sister’ are very alike yet, comparable.

Jane Austen and William Trevor have different thoughts on love and society as both stories resemble on the different feeling and thoughts of love. William Trevor tries to put though to the readers that even no feeling is strong though. William Trevor’s, thoughts on love may be very powerful that he believes that love always comes together in the end, and in his story, he shows this. “She felt that she and Artie might make some kind of marriage together because there was nothing that could be destroyed, no magic” Both ‘Teresa’s Wedding’ and ‘The Three Sisters’ are equally superior, different elements of feeling and emotion have come together to produce excellence in a story.


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