Saturday, August 18, 2018

Jane Austen: Facts, Life and Literature

From History Extra:
In letters to her sister, Jane described Pride and Prejudice (1813) as her “darling child” and wrote “I am never too busy to think of S & S (Sense and Sensibility). I can no more forget it than a mother can forget her sucking child”.This is an interesting analogy because, like pregnancy and childbirth, the creation of her novels was a long and laborious process. Pride and Prejudice, for example, was a long time in the making – she started the first draft in October 1796 but the book wasn’t published until January 1813. The (unread) manuscript was rejected by the first publisher to whom it was sent.
In regarding her novels as her children Jane may also have been acknowledging that if she had followed the traditional path of women of her class and become a wife and mother she would probably not have written them. Her letters contain no indication that she regretted not having children but, if she did, at least she had the compensation of her many nephews and nieces, to whom she was a devoted and much-loved aunt. (Read more.)

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