Although the novel was published anonymously, descriptions like this might
have alerted the astute reader to the fact that the author was a woman.
Not that a man could not have thought of such phrasing, but it is simply
true that we might look far and wide around contemporary novels before
finding a man who actually would employ such a term in like circumstances.
The fact that Walton prizes "undaunted courage" (Letter 2.1) may look like a stereotyped
masculinist attitude, but combining it with an emphasis on gentleness of
disposition shifts the accent considerably.
- Critical Approaches: