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Heroine too dumb to live?
#2
Thank you for your post, Paigenumber. I wish this board were more active!

I agree that I get turned off by heroines who are "too dumb to live." However, the assessment of "too dumb" might be related to the intelligence of the reader. ;-} Also, I realize that women in period novels have to have some restrictions on their thinking that would not be logical today. Those restrictions make them true to the period. I like to feel truly "in the period" when I read historical romances, so it sometimes frustrates me when present-day authors characterize women as having modern-day beliefs. For example, when upper class women willfully go off unchaperoned or without a maid. Or when they make bosom-buddy friends of their servants and elevate those servants to upper-class positions. Or when women dress up as men for some purpose. These things do not ring true to what would have actually happened in the period (esp. the Victorian and Regency periods that I prefer).

Yes, there has been a recent trend to insert into historical romances women who have modern-day beliefs. This is an attempt to get modern-day readers to relate to them more easily, so the heroines do not appear "too dumb." However, sometimes this attempt goes beyond the bounds of the period's propriety. That propriety, especially in the Regency and Victorian periods, was strictly adhered to. Departures from it usually were not even considered by women of those periods. I actually enjoy witnessing such women's efforts to get their needs met within the dictates of their society. Their efforts seem more real to me than those of, for example, a Victorian heroine who dons her brother's breeches to secretly ride a horse astride.

I look forward to hearing others' thoughts on this interesting subject!
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Messages In This Thread
Heroine too dumb to live? - by paigenumber - 11-19-2019, 09:51 PM
RE: Heroine too dumb to live? - by GothicLover - 11-21-2019, 12:39 PM
RE: Heroine too dumb to live? - by paigenumber - 11-22-2019, 01:26 AM

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