It amuses me when people question if Jane Austen and the Brontë Sisters were truly feminists. Um, OK, like, even 250+ years ago, these ladies all realized that a marriage without a woman being genuinely in love with the guy could never truly work.

Ahead of their time?

Fuck, they were ahead of some people now.

One of the things I really like about Jane Austen’s novels is how worthy the male leads are of being romantic interests. They’re not perfect, but they’re as close as someone can reasonably be expected to be; honest, forthright men who will not only love, but cherish and respect the women they marry, and when they’re flawed, they’re made to realize their errors and grow as people. Lots of books and movies nowadays make male interests hot assholes with little to no focus on their personalities, but Austen was a tough one to please; unlike most people, she doesn’t forgive weakness of character, especially for superficial reasons. The douchebags that others romanticize were, more realistically, the villains of her stories, and that’s something we need more of, I think.