This essay explores the relationship between landscape representation and narrative point of view in Jane Austen’s Persuasion, arguing that her innovations with focalization and free indirect style are informed by her knowledge of Reverend William Gilpin’s work on the picturesque and her own travels and sketches. By examining the various spectatorial stances Austen’s characters assume in light of Peter de Bolla’s insights upon eighteenth-century visual practices, the essay demonstrates how Austen uses these narrative techniques to shift the locus of authority to those who were historically marginalized.


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