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Jane Austen : Illusion and Reality - Christopher Brooke

Jane Austen

Illusion and Reality

Hardcover Published: 4th November 1999
ISBN: 9780859915571
Number Of Pages: 236

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'Can he be a sensible man, sir?' 'No, my dear; I think not...' Thus Christopher Brooke prefaces his study of Jane Austen, whose sharp intelligence and wit have been the companions of his leisure for many years. In answer to the question as to whether there can be anything left to be said, Brooke returns rewardingly to her own writing, the novels and the letters, and with a historian's precision reveals new detail and fresh insights. What is the world Jane Austen describes, and how is it related to the world in which she lived? A close reading of each of the major novels leads into a detailed examination of a sheaf of themes - church and clergy, rank and status, marriage - to see how they are handled in their social and historical setting, what is revealed about Jane Austen's deepest convictions, and how these might be validly deduced from the text of her novels. The wisdom and insight he has brought to historical research are now rewardingly brought to bear on a novelist of endless fascination. CHRISTOPHER BROOKE has a wide reputation as a historian, primarily of the medieval church and other institutions (he is the author of The Medieval Idea of Marriage/), and of the 18th-century church portrayed so frequently, and so variously, in Jane Austen's novels.

Industry Reviews

Chiefly a celebration - and why not? - of Austen's wit, this will be most welcome to those who come fresh to this great English novelists (Austen lovers will not really want the long synopses of her novels). The author's love and veneration for his subject shine appealingly through chapters on the church and clergy, rank and status, marriage and morals in his heroine's books. Lord David Cecil re-written for another generation; and very welcome too. (Kirkus UK)

Prologuep. 1
Illusion and Realityp. 9
A Didactic Novelist?p. 19
Materialsp. 27
Chronologyp. 44
Prelude to the Novelsp. 55
Northanger Abbeyp. 58
Sense and Sensibilityp. 65
Pride and Prejudicep. 74
Mansfield Parkp. 85
Emmap. 97
Persuasionp. 110
Church and Clergyp. 119
Rank and Statusp. 151
Marriage in the Novelsp. 167
Convictions and the Moral Codep. 192
Epilogue: Reflections on the Feminism of Jane Austenp. 201
Appendix of Datesp. 207
Bibliographical Referencesp. 209
Indexp. 215
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780859915571
ISBN-10: 0859915573
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 236
Published: 4th November 1999
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 24.77 x 16.51  x 3.18
Weight (kg): 0.59