Emma Vs. Clueless This Paper Term Paper

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She is "handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition" (7). In this respect, Heckerling pays tribute to Austen in creating a similar character. Because of their wealth, both Emma and Cher are spoiled, in control socially, and tend to think too highly of themselves. This is a result of the lack of a maternal figure in their lives, as well as their fathers' over-indulgence. Cher has everything a teenage girl could want: money, her own Jeep, a huge wardrobe, et cetera. Like a lot of girls, she spends a large amount of time and money at the mall; however, she spends hundreds and thousands of dollars on her clothes, not the kind of money a typical teenager would spend. Because her father is so busy with his court cases, he has little time to spend with her to give her guidance and discipline. An example of Cher's snobbishness can be seen in the scene where she and Dionne are explaining to Tai how to become more popular. Cher states that she has already started to elevate her social status "due to fact that you hang with Dionne and I." Cher may be taking pity on Tai, but she does so with an air of arrogance because she knows she is from a higher social class.The minor characters of both the novel and the film act to illustrate the main characters and continue the flow of the story. For instance, the arrival of Frank Churchill causes Knightley to sense consciously for the first time the real nature of his feelings for Emma because he feels immediate jealousy. In Clueless, Josh or Knightley's counterpart takes an instant dislike to Christian or Frank Churchill's counterpart when he arrives to take Cher on their first date. Josh watches jealously as Cher comes down the stairs, looking more beautiful than usual. This puts suspense and hope into the viewer's heart that maybe Cher realize true love is right in front of her instead of focusing her efforts on others as Emma also does.


This paper briefly discussed the parallels between Jane Austen's Emma and the film Clueless. The works are clearly didactic and are meant to teach us that helping others is a virtue while understanding one's own motivation is also important. The characters of Cher and Emma are very similar in many ways despite the difference in time period. The minor characters work to illustrate the main characters and continue the pace of the storyline.

Works Cited

Austen, Jane. Emma. London: Penguin Books, 2003.

Clueless. Dir. Amy Heckerling. Perf. Alicia Silverstone and Stacey….....

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