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Jane Austen News – Issue 147

The Jane Austen News looks forward to Sanditon

What’s the Jane Austen News this week? 

Happy Public Domain Day! 

On January the 1st 2019, hundreds of works of art entered the U.S. public domain following a delay of two decades!

Thanks to a bill which extended copyright terms in 1998, one which was urged in by the Walt Disney Company (in a bid to protect Mickey Mouse) this huge release of early twentieth century works into the public domain hasn’t happened for 21 years. This created a “bizarre 20-year hiatus between the release of works from 1922 and 1923.”

At the Jane Austen News, we really enjoy seeing how out-of-copyright works (such as Pride and Prejudice) can be used to be the basis of, and the inspiration for, new works of art – both literary and visual. Thanks to public domain laws we’ve been able to see stage productions of Jane’s books, new films, and new fiction (What Kitty Did Next and Death Comes to Pemberley for example). We’re therefore highly keen to see what the new release of work may lead to.

Some of the works which are now in the public domain include:

  • Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
  • Two of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot novels, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd and The Murder on the Links
  • A Son At The Front by Edith Wharton
  • Poetry by Robert Frost
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An Interview with the Cast of Austentatious

austentatiousWhen we heard that Austentatious were coming to Bath, we knew we had to get an interview with them… We had a great time asking them about their most memorable shows, their favourite characters to play, and, of course, which Jane Austen novel is their favourite! (more…)
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Jane Austen News – Issue 38

What’s the Jane Austen News this week?  Stanford Says Reading Austen = Awesome Brain Exercise  Now this is the kind of exercise the Jane Austen News could really become addicted to. Researchers at Stanford University say that reading Jane Austen could be the perfect brain exercise. Researchers at Stanford tested literary candidates at the university by hooking them up to an MRI machine and letting them get stuck into a Jane Austen novel. The preliminary results came back and the researchers found that there was a dramatic increase of blood flow to regions of the brain associated with paying close attention to a task. Researcher Natalie Philips explained why this is so good; “paying attention to literary texts requires the coordination of multiple complex cognitive functions.” She suggested that this style of reading creates distinct patterns in the brain that are “far more complex than just work and play.” And why is Jane Austen such a good author to read? Because there’s so much to analyse in its value, historical significance and hidden meanings. It’s mental multi-tasking! It’s official then, Stanford has said so, for the sake of our health we need to read Jane Austen! An Evening With Jane at Gloucester Cathedral     If you live or can get to Gloucester this may well be of interest. On Saturday 22 October at 7.30pm Gloucester Cathedral’s Chapter House will host a very special evening of readings from the works of Jane Austen, bringing alive some of her most-loved and most-reviled characters.  Adrian (more…)
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