Jane Austen’s Books and Characters

  • Catherine Morland: A Failed Gothic Novel Heroine? Catherine Morland: A Failed Gothic Novel Heroine?Catherine Morland: A Failed Gothic Novel Heroine? – A guest essay by Lucie Rivet
    Jane Austen is famed for creating literary characters who feel real to the reader. Perhaps for this reason, even two hundred years after her death, film adaptations, sequels and fan fictions are still being created based upon her work, and Jane Austen …
  • Charlton Heston – An Unlikely Fan Charlton Heston - An Unlikely FanCharlton Heston – An Unlikely Fan

    Actor Charlton Heston, best known for his impressive roles in Ben Hur and Planet of the Apes, was a lesser-known Austen fan it seems. In his vast collection two storey library in his Beverley Hills home he had shelves dedicated to rare books, and on those shelves he had
    The first …

  • Treat Mental Health by Reading Austen Treat Mental Health by Reading AustenTreat Mental Health by Reading Austen

    “Literature and mental health: Reading for wellbeing” is a free course recently offered by the University of Warwick through it’s open learning platform. It was designed to teach anyone who wished to learn how to cope with the trials and tribulations of modern life through the reading and analysis of …

  • Did You Know? Did You Know?Did You Know?

    Helen Amy, the author of The Jane Austen Files, has written an article for BBC History Extra magazine with 8 lesser-known Jane Austen facts.
    Did you know that there’s no mention on Jane’s gravestone that she was an author? Or that Jane’s cousin is said to have saved her life when she was a child?
    The full …

  • Pride and Prejudice…and Complicated Punctuation? Pride and Prejudice...and Complicated Punctuation?Pride and Prejudice…and Complicated Punctuation?

    Adam Calhoun, a literary enthusiast, recently decided to strip back eight of his favourite novels to just their punctuation and analyse the results.
    Interestingly, although Austen’s novels are renowned for long sentences and lots of commas, Adam found that Ernest Hemingway actually uses much denser punctuation. He also found that William Faulkner’s Absalom! …

  • The Leading Ladies of Love & Freindship (sic) Talk Austen Adaptations The Leading Ladies of Love & Freindship (sic) Talk Austen AdaptationsThe Leading Ladies of Love & Freindship (sic) Talk Austen Adaptations

    Kate Beckinsale, who is due to play Lady Susan Vernon in Whit Stillman’s upcoming feature film based on Austen’s Lady Susan, and Chloe Sevigny, who will take the role of her American friend Alicia Johnson, have been speaking about the issues and joys that come …

  • Sense and Sensibility and Accidental(?) Feminism Sense and Sensibility and Accidental(?) FeminismSense and Sensibility and Accidental(?) Feminism

    In other Sense and Sensibility news, Devoney Looser has published an in-depth article that explores how he feels Ang Lee’s 1996 film adaptation brought out the novel’s feminist roots.
    Looser believes that Ang Lee built on Austen’s Sense and Sensibility by adding new egalitarian attitudes toward women to Colonel Brandon and Edward Ferrars.
    “The …

  • Pride and Prejudice Tops The Romance Charts Pride and Prejudice Tops The Romance ChartsPride and Prejudice Tops The Romance Charts

    What is the best romance novel? There are lots and lots of top books lists. So many that you could make a book in its own right out of book lists. But according to those who should know; members of Goodreads – one of the most used and well-known …

  • Who Would You Be?  Who Would You Be? Who Would You Be?

    Joan Bakewell, broadcaster and Labour peer, said in her latest interview with the Independent that if she was a fictional character she would definitely be Emma Woodhouse.
    “I’m like her in always trying to do the right thing and frequently getting it wrong. And given the chance I can be a bit of …

  • Top 10 Romantic Quotes – Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility Ranks Number 1 Top 10 Romantic Quotes - Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility Ranks Number 1Top 10 Romantic Quotes – Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility Ranks Number 1

    “My heart is, and always will be, yours”
    This heart-melting affirmation of love from Edward Ferrars to Elinor Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility has been ranked as the most romantic quote from romantic literature, film and TV drama.
    Jane Austen’s quote beat off rivals from a …

  • The Love of Strangers The Love of StrangersThe Love of Strangers

    1815 was of course the year that Jane Austen’s Emma was first published, but in 2015 another important, unpublished work from the period surfaced – the diary of a young Muslim student named Mirza Salih Shirazi. It tells the real-life story of six scholars enjoying the very best of Regency life in England.
    The Love of Strangers – What Six …

  • The “Quickness” of Elizabeth and the Question of Being the “Better” Woman In Pride and Prejudice The “Quickness” of Elizabeth and the Question of Being the “Better” Woman In Pride and Prejudice“…Being the “Better” Woman In Pride and Prejudice”  is a guest essay by Seth Snow
    In Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Bennet says
    are all silly and ignorant like other girls; but Lizzie has something more of quickness than her sisters.
    The above passage raises several issues pertaining to Mr. Bennet’s character, but the issue concerning this …
  • A Jane Austen Essay – Austen’s Intentional Deprivation of Matriarchy A Jane Austen Essay - Austen’s Intentional Deprivation of MatriarchyA Jane Austen Essay by Mark Massaro, M.A.
    Through the absence, or the duplicity, of mother figures, Jane Austen presents the perceived illusion of matriarchy within the Regency culture.
    During her lifetime in England, patriarchy dictated the treatment of wealth, the home, the government, and relationships, which suppressed the leadership role of females.
    While Austen’s novels deal with …
  • She Was Only Anne – On Anne Elliot in Persuasion She Was Only Anne - On Anne Elliot in PersuasionThis article about Anne Elliot is by Rosario Mesta Rodríguez

    When we think and talk about Jane Austen’s heroines, we tend to associate characteristics such as happiness, bravery, resourcefulness or intelligence to their personalities. And we are right: Jane created numerous female characters such as Emma or Elizabeth Bennet that make us smile everytime we read …

  • Rachel Dodge on Writing “Praying with Jane” Rachel Dodge on Writing "Praying with Jane"Author Rachel Dodge details the inspirations and process behind her new book Praying with Jane.
     ***
    “Prayers Composed by my ever dear Sister Jane”
     
    My first introduction to Jane Austen’s prayers, over a decade ago, happened by chance. I was in graduate school, working on my master’s thesis on Pride and Prejudice, when I found them at the back of the Chapman …
  • Jane Austen: Family Therapist? Jane Austen: Family Therapist?by Patrice Sarath
    One of the joys of re-reading Jane Austen’s novels is finding something new each time, bringing with it a deeper understanding of her characters and the society in which they live. Although Austen is known as a romance writer (and, I would argue, the inventor of modern romance structure), I find her illustration …
  • Austen Superpowers: Self-Awareness & True Love Austen Superpowers: Self-Awareness & True LoveAusten Superpowers: Self-Awareness & True Love
    Kindly reproduced here with permission from its author, Laurie Viera Rigler, who is also the author of the popular Jane Austen Addict novels.

    Can self-importance, meddling, and delusion be considered superpowers?
    Hardly. And yet, the self-congratulating and clueless titular heroine of Jane Austen’s Emma rises above being the character that Austen thought that …

  • Pride and Prejudice and “Universally Acknowledged” “Truths” Pride and Prejudice and “Universally Acknowledged” “Truths”Pride and Prejudice and “Universally Acknowledged” “Truths”
    by Seth Snow

    Jane Austen’s readers are quite familiar with the opening line of Pride and Prejudice:
    It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of …

  • Why Jane Austen’s Persuasion Still Captivates Audiences Why Jane Austen's Persuasion Still Captivates AudiencesThis Spring 2018, Theatre6 is producing a touring production of Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Artistic Director Kate McGregor discusses why they’ve chosen to adapt the work for six actor musicians, and why Persuasion remains so captivating for today’s audiences.

    Adapting a novel like Jane Austen’s Persuasion for the stage, from the earliest planning stages until the opening …

  • Austen Superpowers: Finding Yours With Anne Elliot Austen Superpowers: Finding Yours With Anne ElliotAnne Elliot: A quiet force to be reckoned with.
    Kindly reproduced here with permission from its author, Laurie Viera Rigler, who is also the author of the popular Jane Austen Addict novels.
    Lizzy Bennet may be the one with all the flash and sparkle, but one should never underestimate one of Austen’s more reserved heroines, Anne Elliot of …
  • A Library Talk About Jane Austen A Library Talk About Jane Austenby Margaret Mills
    As a part-time adult education lecturer in English literature and history, I am never happier than when I am asked to deliver a course or a talk about Jane Austen’s life and work.
    In October 2017 I was asked to give a talk at our local public library, and I was delighted to hear …
  • Austen Superpowers: Finding Yours with Lizzy Bennet Austen Superpowers: Finding Yours with Lizzy BennetAusten Superpowers: Finding Yours with Lizzy Bennet

    Kindly reproduced here with permission from its author, Laurie Viera Rigler, who is also the author of the popular Jane Austen Addict novels.
    We dream of them. We want to be them. We wish they were our best friend. Or our partner. And sometimes, we wish we could shake some sense …

  • Jane Austen and the Oliphant in the Room Jane Austen and the Oliphant in the Roomby Alice Chandler, author of Aunt Jane and the Missing Cherry Pie

    I do apologize for the pun in my title.
    The Olifant I refer to is Margaret Olifant (1828-1894), a prolific and popular nineteenth-century writer and said to be Queen Victoria’s favorite novelist. The reason that I figuratively place Olifant in the same room as Jane …

  • The Enduring Love For Jane Austen The Enduring Love For Jane AustenBy Jon Michail

    Jane Austen passed away 200 years ago, yet the names of Lizzy Bennet and Mr Darcy are familiar even to people who have never picked up one of Austen’s novels.
    Then there are those who have read Austen’s works…. countless times. The academics, the Janeites, and those who simply appreciate her work for …

  • Is Jane Austen a Great Writer? Is Jane Austen a Great Writer?By Linore Rose Burkard

    Quora is growing in popularity. What is Quora? A forum where anyone can ask a question to the world (the world as registered on the site, that is) and expect an answer. The good thing about Quora is that you can ask any question you want, and you might learn a thing …

  • In Defence of Jane Austen In Defence of Jane Austenby Rhian Helen Fender
     
    “Mrs Edwards thinks you are a child still. But we know better than that, don’t we.”
    So began the 2008 television adaptation of Jane Austen’s 1811 novel Sense and Sensibility, with the cad Willoughby seducing the naïve ward of heroic Colonel Brandon. The atmosphere seductive with low-light and fireplace burning, ripping bodices and …
  • The Complex Mind of Elizabeth Bennet The Complex Mind of Elizabeth Bennetby Seth Snow

    We have learned, and continue to learn, that a person seems to have both conscious and subconscious thoughts.  Conscious thoughts are those thoughts that influence our behavior with our knowing it, whereas subconscious thoughts are those thoughts that influence our behavior without our knowing it.  I will propose that the characters in Jane …

  • Why Adapt Persuasion for Musical Theatre? Why Adapt Persuasion for Musical Theatre?By Harold Taw
    “She had been forced into prudence in her youth, she learned romance as she grew older—the natural sequel of an unnatural beginning.”
    —Persuasion, Chapter 4
    I’ve encountered three reactions from those who learn we’ve adapted Jane Austen’s final complete novel Persuasion as a musical. The first is delight. This comes from people who hold …
  • Jane Austen’s Life and Impact on Society Jane Austen’s Life and Impact on Societyby Gracelyn Anderson

    Jane Austen entered the world fashionably late by one month on December 16, 1775, as one of the seven Austen children. The Austens resided in a parsonage in Steventon, England, and started a small school for boys in their home to provide extra income along with working their usual occupations. Although Jane’s family …

  • Happiness, Austen Style: Read It Out, Act It Out, Dance It Out Happiness, Austen Style: Read It Out, Act It Out, Dance It OutWelcome to the first of a multi-part series of posts on how to lift yourself out of the blues, Austen style.
    Kindly reproduced here with permission from its author, Laurie Viera Rigler, who is also the author of the popular Jane Austen Addict novels.
     
    Perhaps it’s just that kind of day. Or year. Bottom line: you’re feeling none …
  • Jane Austen and Illness Jane Austen and Illnessby Margaret Mills
    What reading material do you turn to if you are unwell?   The novelist Mrs Elizabeth Gaskell wrote a letter early in 1865 to John Ruskin, about one of her own books, in which she said: “whenever I am ailing or ill, I take Cranford and – I was going to say enjoy it …
  • An Interview With Helena Kelly, Author of Jane Austen the Secret Radical An Interview With Helena Kelly, Author of Jane Austen the Secret RadicalAn Interview With Helena Kelly, Author of Jane Austen the Secret Radical
    Helena Kelly’s book, Jane Austen the Secret Radical,  began an interesting debate around the beloved Regency author when it was released in November 2016.  Kelly’s book explored Jane Austen as a radical, spirited and politically engaged writer, and this was a shock for
    those people …
  • A Dangerous Intimacy: Mansfield Park and Playing at Love A Dangerous Intimacy: Mansfield Park and Playing at LoveBy Lona Manning

    A group of young people, passing the rainy weeks of autumn together in “a dull country house,” decide to entertain themselves by staging a play. So what’s so wrong about that, as the critic Lionel Trilling asks rhetorically in his 1954 essay?
    The characters in Jane Austen’s great novel, Mansfield Park, devote a great …

  • Mr Bennet’s Bride, by Emma Wood Mr Bennet's Bride, by Emma Wood
    It’s a pleasure to have a chance to connect with other Jane Austen enthusiasts. Like many people, my passion for Jane Austen grew hugely with the 1996 mini-series of Pride and Prejudice. The theatricality of the characters and the beauty of her dialogue delivered by that magnificent cast made that series one that was watched …
  • Yours Sincerely: Jane Austen’s Heroes Yours Sincerely: Jane Austen's HeroesYours Sincerely: Jane Austen’s Heroes
    Original content by Rhian Fender
    “There certainly was some great mismanagement in the education of those two young men. One has got all the goodness, and the other all the appearance of it.”
    (Mr Darcy and Mr Wickham of Pride and Prejudice)
    During the late eighteenth and nineteenth century, there was one virtue …
  • Writing In Tough Times: Jane Austen in Bath and Southhampton Writing In Tough Times: Jane Austen in Bath and SouthhamptonExclusive content by Rebecca Smith, author of The Jane Austen Writers’ Club

    One of the hardest things about writing is just keeping going.
    Lots of people can write well, but to finish a novel, receive rejections, keep on editing and revising and then do it all over again takes real stamina. Most published authors’ first novels aren’t …

  • Are Jane Austen’s Heroines Ideal Women? Are Jane Austen's Heroines Ideal Women?By Jenni Waugh
    I recently replied to an email enquiry from a student who was looking for an opinion on the question “To what extent does Jane Austen present her heroines as ideal women within their social contexts?” My reply ended up being fairly lengthy and is below. Let me know what you think!

    Personally, I’d say …

  • What Would Jane Drink? – Coffee in Jane Austen’s Work and World What Would Jane Drink? - Coffee in Jane Austen’s Work and WorldBy Rudy Caretti
    Tea or coffee?
    It’s one of the great British dilemmas… Despite our image as a nation of tea lovers, the numbers tell a different story. According to a report by Mintel Coffee UK, about 70 million cups of coffee were sold each day in Britain in 2008. Another report released in 2012 showed that …
  • The Jane Austen Peacock: How a bird became an icon The Jane Austen Peacock: How a bird became an icon
    The stunning new Jane Austen Peacock brooch, now available from our online gift shop, celebrates the long-standing association between this most handsome of fowl and Jane Austen’s comparably elegant Pride and Prejudice.
    As a motif, the peacock is indelibly linked with the novel; indeed so entrenched is the association that readers often assume peafowl must be …
  • Inner voices: The voices of Anne and Austen in Persuasion Inner voices: The voices of Anne and Austen in PersuasionBy Camilla Magnotti Komatz
    with illustrations from Persuasion by C.E. Brock
    Persuasion, Jane Austen’s last finished novel, is probably the one in which the narrative voice and the protagonist’s voice are most interwoven. Jane Austen’s opinions and visions of the changing times are much similar to those of Anne Elliot. The activity of the story encompasses the …
  • He was only Sir Walter: the opening of Persuasion He was only Sir Walter: the opening of PersuasionBy Giulia Magnotti Komatz
    with illustrations from Persuasion by C.E. Brock
    The first few paragraphs of Persuasion describe Sir Walter Elliot’s personality. The novel’s opening words – “Sir Walter Elliot, of Kellynch Hall, in Somersetshire…” – convey the character’s essence by seeming to imitate the style of his beloved Baronetage: “Elliot of Kellynch Hall: Walter Elliot, born …
  • Mrs Bennet’s Round Robin, by Viv Cavallo
    To all our dear neighbours in Hertfordshire…
    What a wonderful year the Bennet family has enjoyed with three of my girls successfully married!
    My darling Lydia, youngest of my five daughters is blissfully happy with her ‘dear Wickham’ as she calls him.  Just think of it – only sixteen years old, yet she was the first of …
  • Jane Austen’s ‘Forgotten’ Characters by Priyanka Chavda Jane Austen's 'Forgotten' Characters by Priyanka ChavdaPriyanka Chavda explores Jane Austen’s characters in development.
  • Elizabeth Bennet information from the Jane Austen Centre Elizabeth Bennet information from the Jane Austen CentreElizabeth Bennet
    Elizabeth Bennet, or Lizzy Bennet, or Eliza, is the main character of the Jane Austen novel Pride and Prejudice (1813). She is a witty young girl of twenty with dark eyes and hair. Elizabeth Bennet is the second of five sisters and resides in a small house called Longbourn outside the town of Meryton. …
  • Mr Darcy information from The Jane Austen Centre Mr Darcy information from The Jane Austen CentreMr Darcy in Pride and Prejudice
    Mr Darcy,  Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy, is one of Jane Austen’s most beloved male heroes from her novel Pride and Prejudice. He has a large estate of Pemberley which sits in Derbyshire and he has claim to a fortune of ten thousand a year. The Pemberley estate is extremely large with many acres of …
  • Pride and Prejudice information from the Jane Austen Centre Pride and Prejudice information from the Jane Austen CentrePride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, published in 1813. Started in 1796 as First Impressions. Pride and Prejudice is about the Bennet family
  • The influence of Jane Austen’s social background on two of her novels The influence of Jane Austen's social background on two of her novelsan essay, by Jana Schneider
  • Annotating Jane Austen: What Would Elinor Do? Annotating Jane Austen: What Would Elinor Do?Margaret C. Sullivan takes an in depth look at Sense and Sensibility
  • Hannah More and Jane Austen: Mary Crawford and Jane Fairfax Hannah More and Jane Austen: Mary Crawford and Jane FairfaxArnie Perlstein examines “the sale—not quite of human flesh—but of human intellect”
  • Creating A Regency Christmas Author Amanda Grange sets the scene in her latest book.
  • Why Jane Austen? Why Now? A viewer questions the need for so many adaptations of Jane Austen’s Work
    By Arti of Ripple Effects
  • Jane Austen and Vampyres Ellen Moody looks at the recent spate of paranormal Jane Austen knock-offs
  • In Defense of Edmund Bertram Jane Austen’s less heroic Hero.
  • Jane Austen’s Heroes How has Jane Austen influenced the modern perception of the Literary Hero?
  • Pride and Prejudice in a Nutshell This short poem sums it all up nicely…
  • Jane Austen’s Caustic Wit Jane Austen's Caustic WitAre Jane Austen and Lizzie Bennet more alike than First Impressions would suggest?
  • Mansfield Park: Jane Austen the Contrarian Mansfield Park: Jane Austen the ContrarianA New look at Fanny Price, Jane Austen’s most Consummate Heroine
    By Arti of Ripple Effects
  • Miss Woodhouse Regrets The Development of Austen’s Emma
    By Arti of Ripple Effects
  • Pride and Prejudice Revisited Pride and Prejudice Revisited  A fresh look at a favorite film.
    By Arti of Ripple Effects
  • Letters Relating to the Dedication of Emma Letters to and from Jane Austen and James Stanier Clark
  • How this book came to be printed
  • Opinions of Jane Austen’s Emma Opinions of Jane Austen's EmmaCriticism and Praise for Emma from Jane Austen’s personal collection.
  • Opinions of Mansfield Park After the publication of her book, Jane Austen collected these comments…
  • Emma the ‘Imaginist’ Emma the 'Imaginist'Emma and Harriet discover the scope and limits of imagination.
  • Ponderous Obsequity Ponderous ObsequityMr. Collins as a Mirror, held to the face of Society
  • Jane Austen’s Wise Wit Jane Austen's Wise WitLiterature’s lost art of Repartee
  • The Marriage of Darcy and Elizabeth The Marriage of Darcy and ElizabethCan the reader admit reservations?
  • Jane By Any Other Name Jane By Any Other NamePrimarily an English novelist, how is Austen recieved in other countries?
  • Time flies by in Sense and Sensibility Why Sense and Sensibility was first written in letter format.
  • Lady Susan’s Calendar The life and times of Austen’s wickedest heroine.
  • The Sands of Time A calendar for Sanditon
  • The Watson’s Calendar Events for Austen’s fragment
  • Who Wrote Robert Martin’s Proposal? Who Wrote Robert Martin's Proposal?We all know that Emma wrote Harriet’s response to Robert Martin’s proposal but who wrote his letter?
    By Michaela Spangenburg
  • An Apt Analogy for the Declining Year Anne Elliot accompanies…Louisa Musgrove and Captain Wentworth on a walk over the November fields
  • No Time to be Lost No Time to be LostJane’s use of Psychological and Diurnal time in Northanger Abbey
  • Austen as a Hot Property Austen as a Hot Property(But not available for Book Signings)
  • Persuasive Dates Persuasive DatesPersuasion, Emma and Eight years of Misery
  • The Mansfield Park Calendar The Mansfield Park CalendarJust how fast did Henry Crawford move, anyway?
  • A Calendar for Pride and Prejudice A Calendar for Pride and PrejudiceThe Twenty-nineth of November and other pivitol days
  • A Calendar for Emma A Calendar for EmmaImportant dates and holidays, as well as a list of all major events by year.
  • Catherine Morland in Bath Catherine Morland in BathA study of favorite haunts in and around Bath.
  • Sense and Sensibility Sense and SensibilityIs it all about self-control?
  • Wentworth Makes His Bones: The Battle of St. Domingo: February 4, 1806 Wentworth Makes His Bones: The Battle of St. Domingo: February 4, 1806The battle of St. Domingo, February 4, 1806.
  • What makes Persuasion Unique? What makes Persuasion Unique?“There is a peculiar beauty and a peculiar dullness in Persuasion” – Virginia Woolf
  • Darcy’s Romance: The Backbone of P&P Darcy's Romance: The Backbone of P&PThe evolution of Darcy’s love for Elizabeth…from a man’s point of view
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