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Thanks! -- Arnie Perlstein, Portland, OR

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Amazing Convergence & Synchronicity of Evidence re Marianne Dashwood as Dido Elizabeth Belle from the EAST Indies!

Ellen Moody wrote: “I assume Diana Birchall will not mind if I inform all that she told me of a paper she heard by Anne Mellor where Mellor argues that Elizabeth (Belle Dido) Lindsay was not part African (negroid in genetic background) but Indian (South Asian). Look again at the painting (one of our main sources of evidence for the existence of this young woman):
Her features are European-Caucasian as seen in South Asian people; her father was in India.
It's been turned into a story that is about negroid slavery and it is but the girl at the center is not herself part African. She would probably have had an easier time marrying into British whites because of this. British people then (and we see it in the novels of Austen too) had a way of
calling anyone not fair (blue-eyed, blonde, light skin) "black" without distinguishing real gene pools.”

What amazing convergence of evidence, and synchronicity, among the following:

ONE: I posted a month ago about Marianne Dashwood with her brown skin and dark eyes as being a representation of Dido Elizabeth Belle:

TWO: Just the other day, after seeing the film Belle,  I followed up to that earlier post with one about, among other things, Marianne as "the nicest little black bitch" Sir John Dashwood refers to:

THREE: Then just yesterday my friend Linda Walker, author of this very recent article...
“Jane Austen, the Second Anglo-Mysore War, and Colonel Brandon’s Forcible Circumcision: A Rereading of Sense and Sensibility

...and I were chatting about my two above linked blog posts, and she responded to my posts with the very intriguing suggestion that perhaps Marianne’s brown skin was a marker of her being of East (and not West) Indian descent.

So now….

FOUR: To read Ellen’s post reporting on Mellor’s suggestion that Dido herself might have been of East Indian descent closes the circle with, as I said, incredible convergence of evidence and synchronicity!

Cheers, ARNIE
@JaneAustenCode on Twitter

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