I’ve waited a couple days to post this because I didn’t want to spoil anything for those who’ve not watched the latest episode of “Downton Abbey.”
Alas, the opinion writer (and middle sister!) in me just has to give mad props to Lady Edith Crawley.
Throughout the series’ first two seasons, this character has given underdog siblings everywhere a bad name. Her jealous and petty acts were cliche and hard to watch. It’s nice to see her character evolve this season into one of the more sensible, pragmatic members of the family.
Need to catch up on all things Edith? Watch the brief segment below:
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The jilted, self-described “spinster” is a girl many of us can relate to; someone who finds herself alone and desperate to do something meaningful with her life.
The Dowager Countess of Grantham may have had a hand in sabotaging her granddaughter’s nuptials, but she also offered some decent straight talk in the aftermath.
“Edith dear, you’re a woman with a brain and reasonable ability. Stop whining and find something to do,” scolds Lady Violet.
And she does! Finally!
Encouraged by her progressive brother-in-law, Lady Edith sends an op-ed to the local newspaper condemning the limitations of a women’s suffrage bill and the “efforts to return women to their prewar existence.”
Aw, yes. Much to the chagrin of her old-fashioned father, Lady Edith has found her voice and — more importantly — a proper outlet to air her views.
Watch the scene below, about 8:49 minutes into the clip.
Is journalism in her future? I sure hope so. In fact, I’d love to see how British newsrooms treated a young, single professional woman in 1920. (My guess is she pursues a career and encounters Lady Mary’s former flame, the creepy newspaper titan Sir Richard Carlisle.)
My delight in Lady Edith’s rare triumph is also based on a broad, simple notion: newspaper editorial pages have and will continue to serve as a gathering place for people to share their ideas.