By Claudia L. Johnson, Clara Tuite
Reflecting the dynamic and expansive nature of Austen reports, A better half to Jane Austen presents forty two essays from a uncommon staff of literary students that study the whole breadth of the English novelist's works and profession.
- Provides the main complete and updated array of Austen scholarship
- Functions either as a scholarly reference and as a survey of the main leading edge speculative advancements within the box of Austen reports
- Engages at size with altering contexts and cultures of reception from the 19th to the twenty-first centuries
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Extra resources for A Companion to Jane Austen
This is a kind of writing in which details of personal experience – of sensation and action – are entrusted to a form of language that designedly betrays them, leaving the extent of what is revealed highly problematic and personal investment troublingly hijacked – unless one has the key to decipher them. ” Austen herself captures wonderfully the continuing wayward importance of “little matters” to her epistolary art when she confides to Cassandra, in September 1813, that “I am still a Cat if I see a Mouse” (Letters: 225).
Mary Austen is also a source (though not this time an eye-witness) for the circumstances surrounding Austen’s acceptance and subsequent refusal of Harris Bigg-Wither’s marriage proposal, which can be dated precisely to December 2–3, 1802. Characteristic of all three key events is that we come closest to Austen in moments of loss or negation; which is to say: we know her best (we have most authoritative documentary information) for the moments when she vanishes from view or for the things she did not do.
Letters: 17; and see 76, 151); “I cannot write any closer” (Letters: 79); “You are very amiable & very clever to write such long Letters; every page of yours has more lines than this, & every line more words than the average of mine. I am quite ashamed – but you have certainly more little events than we have” (Letters: 131); “I will leave off, or I shall not have room to add a word tomorrow” (Letters: 18). Typically, the sisters sent two letters each per week when apart, each letter filling a single sheet folded to form four pages and written over two or three days, the next one begun within hours of the latest sent rather than in response to the direct prompting of the postal service; a continuous if unsynchronized conversation: “Your letter is come; it came indeed twelve lines ago, but I could not stop to acknowledge it before” (Letters: 52).
A Companion to Jane Austen by Claudia L. Johnson, Clara Tuite