Jane Austen in Context is a flexible and user-friendly online research tool that provides classrooms with a wide range of materials for the study of Austen’s novels, including critical articles, visual materials, and interactive timelines and maps.
A selection of over thirty critical articles and chapters balances classic interpretations with more contemporary approaches, including feminist, queer, new historicist, and postcolonial perspectives. Some pieces, such as Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s reading of Sense and Sensibility and Edward Said’s reading of Mansfield Park, focus on one novel but offer widely applicable insights; others, such as those by Jan Fergus and Franco Moretti, discuss Austen’s full body of work. Interactive maps of England, Bath, London, and more situate Austen’s novels geographically, and interactive timelines place Austen’s life and work in literary, historical, and political contexts. Also included are extensive selections of contextual materials with a strong visual emphasis, illuminating subjects such as “Sensibility,” “Transportation,” “Slavery,” “Landscape and the Picturesque,” “Social Life,” “Fashion,” and “The Navy” (among others). A glossary of literary terms is also included.
New to this resource is a robust search tool, which allows students to filter the material to suit their research needs—both by searching for particular novels and by searching for specific topics (such as “masculinity,” “anti-Jacobinism,” “class,” and so on).
Access to this online resource can be purchased on our website or sold by campus bookstores. The resource is designed to work well in concert with Broadview Editions of Austen, but it can be used in conjunction with any editions of Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, and/or Persuasion. If professors have chosen to assign Broadview Editions of Austen and wish to also have access to this website, package pricing can be arranged through their Broadview representative.
If you are a course instructor and wish to review this online resource or order it for course use, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 1. On Austen
- Virginia Woolf, “Jane Austen.” The Common Reader, 1925.
- D.W. Harding, “‘Regulated Hatred’: An Aspect in the Work of Jane Austen.” Regulated Hatred and Other Essays on Jane Austen, 1940.
- Raymond Williams, from “Three Around Farnham.” The Country and the City, 1975.
- Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar, from “Jane Austen’s Cover Story (and its Secret Agents).” The Madwoman in the Attic: The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination, 1979.
- David Lodge, “Jane Austen’s Novels: Form and Structure.” The Jane Austen Handbook, 1986.
- Marilyn Butler, from “Sentimentalism: The Radical Inheritance.” Jane Austen and the War of Ideas, 1988.
- Franco Moretti, from “The Novel, the Nation-State.” Atlas of the European Novel, 1800–1900, 1998.
- Jillian Heydt-Stevenson, “Introduction: Did Jane Austen Really Mean That?” Austen’s Unbecoming Conjunctions: Subversive Laughter, Embodied History, 2005.
- E. J. Clery, “Austen and Masculinity.” A Companion to Jane Austen, 2009.
- 2. Sense and Sensibility
- Mary Poovey, from “Ideological Contradictions and the Consolations of Form.” The Proper Lady and the Woman Writer, 1984.
- Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, “Jane Austen and the Masturbating Girl.” Critical Inquiry, Vol. 17, No. 4, 1991.
- Gene W. Ruoff, “Wills.” from Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, 1992.
- Patricia Meyer Spacks, from “Privacy, Dissimulation, and Propriety: Frances Burney and Jane Austen.” Eighteenth Century Fiction, Vol. 12, No. 4, 2000.
- 3. Pride and Prejudice
- E. M. Halliday, “Narrative Perspective in Pride and Prejudice.” Nineteenth Century Literature, Vol. 15, No. 1, 1960.
- Nina Auerbach, from “Waiting Together: Two Families: Pride and Prejudice.” Communities of Women: An Idea in Fiction, 1978.
- Claudia L. Johnson, from “Pride and Prejudice and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Jane Austen: Women, Politics and the Novel, 1988.
- Alex Woloch, from “Narrative Asymmetry in Pride and Prejudice.” The One vs. the Many, 2003.
- Amy Baker, “Caught in the Act of Greatness: Jane Austen’s Characterization of Elizabeth and Darcy by Sentence Structure in Pride and Prejudice.” The Explicator, Vol. 72, No. 3, 2014.
- Sheryl Craig, from “Pride and Prejudice: The Speenhamland System.” Jane Austen and the State of the Nation, 2015.
- 4. Mansfield Park
- Lionel Trilling, “In Mansfield Park.” The Opposing Self, 1955.
- Alastair Duckworth, “Mansfield Park and Estate Improvements: Jane Austen’s Grounds of Being.” Nineteenth-Century Fiction, Vol. 26, No. 1, 1971.
- Edward Said, from “Jane Austen and Empire.” Culture Imperialism, 1994.
- Susan Fraiman, from “Jane Austen and Edward Said: Gender, Culture, and Imperialism.” Critical Inquiry, Vol. 21, No. 4, 1995.
- Brian Southam, “The Silence of the Bertrams.” Times Literary Supplement, 17 February 1995.
- Daniel O’Quinn, “Jane Austen and Performance: Theatre, Memory, and Enculturation.”
Companion to Jane Austen, 2009.
- 5. Emma
- Lionel Trilling, “Emma and the Legend of Jane Austen.” Beyond Culture: Essays on Literature and Learning, 1957.
- Wayne Booth “Control of Distance in Jane Austen’s Emma.” Nineteenth Century Fiction, Vol. 16, No. 2, 1961.
- Patricia Meyer Spacks, “The Talent of Ready Utterance.” Gossip, 1985.
- John Wiltshire, “Health, Comfort, and Creativity: A Reading of Emma.” Jane Austen: Introductions and Interventions, 2003.
- Catherine Ingrassia, “Emma, Slavery, and Cultures of Captivity.” Persuasions, Vol. 38, 2016.
- 6. Northanger Abbey
- Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar, “Shut Up in Prose: Austen’s Juvenilia.” from The Madwoman in the Attic: The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination, 1979.
- Devoney Looser, “Reading Jane Austen and Rewriting ‘Herstory.’” Critical Essays on Jane Austen, edited by Laura Mooneyham White, 1998.
- Susan Zlotnick. “From Involuntary Object to Voluntary Spy: Female Agency, Novels, and the Marketplace in Northanger Abbey.” Studies in the Novel Vol. 41, No. 3, 2009.
- Susan Wolfson, “Introduction.” Northanger Abbey: An Annotated Edition, Harvard UP, 2014.
- Lauren Miskin, “‘True Indian Muslin’ and the Politics of Consumption in Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey.” Journal for Early Modern Cultural Studies, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2015.
- Toby R. Benis, “The Neighborhoods of Northanger Abbey.” The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation, Vol. 56, No. 2, 2015.
- 7. Persuasion
- Adela Pinch, “Lost in a Book: Jane Austen’s Persuasion.” Studies in Romanticism, Vol. 32, No.1, 1993.
- Brian Southam, “The Novelist and the Navy” and “Persuasion: The Writing and Re-Writing of History.” Jane Austen and the Navy, 2000.
- Melissa Sodeman, “Domestic Mobility in Persuasion and Sanditon.” Studies in Romanticism, Vol. 32, No. 1, 1993.
- Jocelyn Harris, from “The Reviser at Work.” A Revolution beyond Expression: Jane Austen’s Persuasion, 2007.
- Katie Gemmill, from “Jane Austen as Editor: Letters on Fiction and the Cancelled Chapters of Persuasion.” Eighteenth-Century Fiction, 2011.
- Taylor Walle, from “‘He Looked Quite Red’: Persuasion and Austen’s New Man of Feeling.” Eighteenth Century Fiction, Vol. 29, No.1, 2016.
- 1. Social Life
- 2. Transportation
- 3. Landscape and the Picturesque
- 4. Austen’s Life
- 5. Fashion
- 6. Domestic Objects
- 7. Trade
- 8. The Navy
- 9. French Revolution
- 10. Slavery
- 11. Sensibility
- 12. The Gothic
- 13. Literary Influences
- 14. Wills and Primogeniture
- The World
- Elizabeth Bennett’s Tour of Derbyshire
- Bath, Bristol, and the Surrounding Area
Interactive Timelines of Austen’s life, Austen’s writing and publications, historical and political events, and literary developments