Developing Novel Readers: The Case of Jane Austen
My research explores three major works of Jane AustenNorthanger Abbey, Pride and Prejudice, and Persuasionwith an eye toward Austens development of ideological and formal features of the novel, as well as her attempts to coach her characters and, by implication, the reader, in how to understand these new features. By analyzing Austens presentation of characters engaged in reading texts as diverse as novels, sermons, conduct books, letters, poems, situations, and countenances, I hope to develop an understanding of the way in which Austen desired her novels to be read and to explore the implications of Austens theories of reading practice upon the rise in the respectability of the novel in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
Message to Sponsor
- Major: English
- Mentor: Celeste Langan, English