Why read Jane Austen?


The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet

{2017 celebrates the life of Jane Austen, and her death 200 years ago, on 18th July 1817}

I suppose most of us were made to read one or another of Jane Austen’s small output of novels while we were at school, and many didn’t enjoy the experience. Something about the combination of old-fashioned language and compulsory reading can be off-putting. Still, haven’t we all watched the TV or film adaptations, and enjoyed her portrayals of the high life in Eighteenth Century England? But it’s all a far cry from the modern world, where’s there’s surely no place for essays in etiquette, or comedies of manners.

Au contraire. For in Jane Austen, we have someone who may have danced at balls, guested at fine mansions, and observed the behaviours of high society, but she didn’t belong to the upper echelons. Jane was a vicarage child; her parents were would-be gentry…

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About yvonnemarjot

I was born in Britain, grew up in New Zealand, and now live on an island on the west coast of Scotland. I fit my writing addiction around my teenage sons and a day job with the local Council. I will continue to write even if no-one reads my work, because it’s often the only thing that keeps me sane. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t write poems and make up stories, and I once won a case of port in a poetry competition (NZ Listener, May 1996). In December 2012 I won the Britwriters Adult Poetry prize, and my first poetry collection, The Knitted Curiosity Cabinet, was published by Indigo Dreams. My novels, The Calgary Chessman, The Book of Lismore, and Walking on Wild Air are published by Crooked Cat.
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