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Category Archive for 'Biography'

A number of Jane Austen related books was donated to my Jane Austen group (mine had a ticket – number 100 – to an ‘At Home’ for the Dean and Chapter of Westminster and the Officers of the Order of the Bath). I had heard of this book, but never came across it, so took […]

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I saw this in Dymocks and had to have it although I do wonder how many biographies one person needs to own. This is an interesting way of presenting a person’s life. Byrne has found a series of objects (meant to be meaningful to Austen) and then used them as a stepping off point to […]

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I finished! Chapter Six is about the Jane Austen brand. Austen is both a popular author and a great one. As such she exists in several mutually exclusive spheres – she is all things to all men. The middle aged, the middle class and those who consider themselves slightly above the middlebrow are Austen’s natural […]

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Chapter Five – Divine Jane In this chapter Harman discusses how Jane Austen became ‘Divine Jane’ or ‘Dear Jane’. In the 1880s the increasing audience was more for Miss Austen than the novels. She was still, however, being read by ‘a few cultured men’ which ensured her critical success. An idea seemed to emerged that […]

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I found this book (Jane Austen – A biography by Elizabeth Jenkins) at my local second hand book store. What a fabulous find (and it was only $10.50). It’s been out of print for ages. Oh and I’m slowly making my way through Chapter Five of Jane’s Fame.

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In this chapter Harman writes about the Austen families response to Austen’s growing popularity (as Caroline wrote to James Edward ‘this vexed question between the Austens and the public’)and the demand for more information. Catherine-Anne Hubback (Frank’s daughter) wrote a novel (which was essentially a continuation of The Watsons – not that the public knew) […]

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Jane Austen died in July 1817 – she was 41. Her death notice in the Courier was the first public acknowledgement of her authorship. However, no mention appeared on the memorial inscription on her grave stone. Both James and James Edward wrote poems to commemorate the occasion. Both mention how she put her domestic duties […]

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When I set myself the task of reading two chapters a week of Jane’s Fame, I thought it would be easy. However, I have found myself at the end of a chapter without any real idea what I was reading. I haven’t been able to focus. This is in part because the book is such […]

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This post is a bit delayed because I’ve been away (for school holidays) anyway … Chapter One of Claire Harman’s Jane’s Fame provides some biographical detail, but more interestingly focuses on the writers in her family and amongst her acquaintance. We read about her brothers James and Henry who produced The Loiterer (every Saturday from […]

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My first selection in the Everything Austen Challenge was Jane’s Fame – How Jane Austen Conquered the World by Claire Harman. I found my copy (under a pile of to-be-dealt-with magazines and books) and I have planned my reading for the month. The book has seven chapters – I plan to read two chapters a […]

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