At once acutely aware of popular culture and a product of it, Jane Austen read and wrote in popular forms, from epistolary fiction to Gothic horror to realism to raucous satire to popular theater. We'll survey her in all these guises, reading five of Austen's novels during our time in London, including Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, and Emma. On the way, we'll pay special attention to Austen's achievement as an innovator within the larger history of the novel. To that end, we'll focus on her experiments with form, voice, genre, and geography. Among our activities outside the classroom will be a Jane Austen London excursion and a country walk either to Box Hill or (weather permitting) to Chawton House in Hampshire, where Austen wrote most of her fiction.
This course satisfies the Arts and Literature sector of the College's General Requirement.