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Archive for the ‘Museum Exhibitions’ Category

The Wellcome Library announced on Monday its plan to release over 100,000 images from its collection of treasures – all in the Public Domain! [CC-BY = please give credit to the Wellcome Library when using any image]

One fine example:

V0019578 A pretty barmaid drawing beer. Coloured lithograph, c. 1825.

A pretty barmaid drawing beer. Coloured lithograph, c. 1825. 
Published: Tregear London (123, Cheapside); Printed: Dean & Manday, lithographers [London]
Image credit: the Wellcome Library, London

A quick search brings up nothing “Jane Austen” – but as you imagine there are nearly 300 Rowlandson prints – here is one to bring to mind summer while more than half the country is in a deep-freeze:

L0017751 A woman diving off a bathing wagon in to the sea. Coloured e

L0017751 – Venus’s Bathing (Margate) –  A woman diving off a bathing wagon in to the sea
Hand-coloured etching 1790 By: Thomas Rowlandson 
Image Credit: Wellcome Library, London

Further exploring: [endless enjoyment!]

c2014 Jane Austen in Vermont

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Opening today! ~ “Georgians Revealed: Life, Style and the Making of Modern Britain” – 8 November – 11 March 2014 at the British Library

tomjerrycoffeeshop-orig

I.R. and G. Cruikshank. ‘Tom & Jerry at a Coffee Shop near the Olympic’ – Pierce Egan, Life in London (London, 1823).

 Tasteful and polite, or riotous and pleasure-obsessed? Discover the Georgians as they really were, through the objects that tell the stories of their lives.

From beautifully furnished homes to raucous gambling dens, Georgians Revealed explores the revolution in everyday life that took place between 1714 and 1830. Cities and towns were transformed. Taking tea, reading magazines, gardening and shopping for leisure were commonplace, and conspicuous consumption became the pastime of the emerging middle classes.

Popular culture as we know it began, and with it the unstoppable rise of fashion and celebrity. Art galleries, museums and charities were founded. In this time of incredible innovation, ideas were endlessly debated in the new coffee houses and spread via the information highway that was mass print.

Drawing on the British Library’s uniquely rich and rare collections of illustrated books, newspapers, maps and advertisements, as well as loaned artworks and artifacts, “Georgians Revealed” brings to life the trials and triumphs of the ordinary people who transformed Britain forever.

Georgiansrevealed banner

See this link for a short video on the exhibition by curator Moira Goff.

And check out the online shop where all manner of Georgian -related treasures are for sale, as well as a catalogue of the exhibition, another must-have for your Jane Austen collection!

Georgians-map_fan3

Rocque map of London fan, £8
A beautiful wooden fan, featuring a historic map created by John Rocque.
The fan has been created exclusively for the British Library. Wood/ canvas.

[Images and text from the British Library website]

c2013 Jane Austen in Vermont

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If you are into your holiday shopping early, or compiling your own wish-list, here is a fine start: a must-have for your Jane Austen collection:  the Folio Society’s latest edition of  Pride and Prejudice, 2013.

PP-cover-Folio2013

“I had not known you a month before I felt that you were the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.” 

One of the world’s favourite books, Pride and Prejudice has long been regarded as a classic romance. In Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy, Jane Austen created the greatest pair of sparring lovers since Shakespeare’s Beatrice and Benedick. This sparkling comedy of manners features an inimitable cast of characters including the obsequious Mr Collins, the autocratic Lady Catherine de Bourgh, and Mrs Bennet, the most embarrassing mother in literature.

The award-winning Balbusso twins have contributed eight exquisite illustrations to this edition, as well as a striking cover design. The novel’s celebrated first line is blocked in gold on the slipcase. In a new introduction, the author Sebastian Faulks praises ‘a novel of almost boundless wit and charm that has withstood film and television adaptations and attempts to define it as a “fairy tale” or a “rom-com”.’

balbusso_05_pplarge

[Pride and Prejudice (Folio, 2013): image from the Balbusso website]

Details:

  • Introduced by Sebastian Faulks.
  • Illustrated by Anna and Elena Balbusso.
  • Bound in metallic cloth, blocked with a design by Anna and Elena Balbusso.
  • 352 pages.
  • Frontispiece and 7 colour illustrations.
  • Book size: 9½” x 6¼”
  • $62.50

[Text from the Folio Society Website]

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…has launched today! – visit the website What Jane Saw and you can follow Jane Austen as she tours the exhibit!

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The perfect time-travel adventure – it is May 24, 1813 –  what do you see?…

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From the website: [ http://www.whatjanesaw.org/index.php ]

On 24 May 1813, Jane Austen visited an important and  much-talked-about art exhibit at the British Institution in Pall Mall, London. The show  was a retrospective of the works of Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792), England’s  celebrated portrait painter.

No visual record of this show is known to have survived, although it  attracted hundreds of daily visitors during its much-publicized three-month run.  However, many details of the exhibit can be reconstructed from the original 1813  “Catalogue of Pictures,” a one-shilling pamphlet purchased by visitors as a guide  through the three large rooms where hung 141 paintings by Reynolds. Armed with  surviving copies of this pamphlet, narrative accounts in nineteenth-century newspapers  and books, and precise architectural measurements of the British Institution’s exhibit  space, this website reconstructs the Reynolds show as Jane Austen (as well as any Jane  Doe) saw it.

I. Why reconstruct this museum exhibit from 1813?

In truth, even if Jane Austen had not attended this public  exhibit, it would still be well worth reconstructing. The British Institution’s show  was a star-studded “first” of great magnitude for the art community and a turning point  in the history of modern exhibit practices. The 1813 show amounted to the first  commemorative exhibition devoted to a single artist ever staged by an institution.  Although Reynolds, who had died a mere twenty-one years earlier, did not yet qualify as  an Old Master, he was already hailed as the founder of the British School and  celebrated as a model for contemporary artists to emulate. The preface to the exhibit  catalogue, written by Richard Payne Knight, treats the work of Sir Joshua Reynolds as a  national treasure in order “to call attention generally to British, in preference to  Foreign Art” (Knight, 9). Knight allows that some of Reynolds’ paintings are better  than others, likening the show to a pedagogical tool for artists and connoisseurs. He  also insists upon the show’s modernity, hailing “the genuine excellence of modern”  artists over the work of their forbearers (Knight, 9). In light of the coverage it  received in the popular press and the London crowds that attended, the British  Institution’s Reynolds exhibit presaged the modern museum blockbuster.

In the age before the photograph, portraits of the rich and famous were  often reproduced by engravers as inexpensive prints. These black and white  reproductions circulated Reynolds’ images of contemporary celebrities widely,  providing pinups to the middling consumer. In this manner, Reynolds’ works  functioned as the modern photographs of Annie Leibovitz do today, making it  hard to say whether he recorded or created celebrity with his art. Wherever  possible, the light-boxes in the e-exhibit therefore show an early engraving  as well as the original canvas. Reynolds’ portraits of “abnormally interesting  people” whom we now term celebrities offer concrete examples of just how  someone like Austen, who did not personally circulate among the social elite,  was nonetheless immersed in England’s vibrant celebrity culture (Roach,  1).

More questions are answered under the About WJS page:

  • Is there a connection between this exhibit and Jane Austen’s fiction?
  • Who, other than the Austens, attended this 1813 exhibit?
  • How did visitors in 1813 experience the British Institution?
  • Did the Catalogue function as a museum guide in 1813?
  • How historically accurate is this website?
  • Room for interpretation and improvement
  • Works Cited / Site Credits

It is a rainy weekend here in Vermont – what better way to spend a few hours but at such an exhibition as this!

Further reading:

reynolds - self-portrait detail - britannica

Sir Joshua Reynolds

barchas-janine

Janine Barchas is Associate Professor of English at the University of Texas at Austin.  She is the author of  Matters of Fact in Jane Austen: History, Location, and Celebrity (Johns Hopkins University Press, August 2012).  Her  first book, Graphic Design, Print Culture, and the Eighteenth-Century Novel (Cambridge UP, 2003), won the SHARP book prize for best work in the field of book history.  Her newest project is the website What Jane Saw (www.whatjanesaw.org).

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c2013 Jane Austen in Vermont

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We have been both to the Exhibition & Sir J. Reynolds’, – and I am disappointed, for there was nothing like Mrs. D. [Darcy] at either. – I can only imagine that Mr. D. prizes any Picture of her too much to like it should be exposed to the public eye. – I can imagine he w’d have that sort [of omitted] feeling – that mixture of Love, Pride & Delicacy.- Setting aside this disappointment, I had great amusement among the Pictures…”

[Jane Austen, Letter 85, Monday 24 May 1813]

Those who have read Jane Austen’s letters are familiar with her comments on visiting London. It has been an ongoing project of mine to figure out where she went and what she did and how she uses the pieces of her London treks in her novels.  One of the more interesting and frustrating is her reference to the art exhibit of Sir Joshua Reynolds – what did she see there, other than not finding a portrait of Mrs. Darcy? It has been revealed today that we will now have a chance to see exactly that, sort of following Jane herself around the galleries, as Professor Janine Barchas of the University of Texas at Austin launches What Jane Saw - a complete reconstruction of that exhibit. You will surely want to bookmark this new website and mark your calendars to view the happening on May 24, 2013!

From the website:

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On 24 May 1813, Jane Austen visited an art exhibit at the British Institution in Pall Mall, London. The popular show was the first-ever retrospective of the works of Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792), England’s celebrated portrait painter.  On 24 May 2013, two centuries to the day that Austen viewed the 141 paintings in that exhibit, this site will open its doors as a public e-gallery, offering the modern visitor a precise historical reconstruction of that long-lost Regency blockbuster.

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I will be posting more on this as we near the launch date – this is very exciting, so stay tuned!!

[image from What Jane Saw]

reynolds - self-portrait detail - britannica

Self-portrait of Sir Joshua Reynolds

c2013 Jane Austen in Vermont

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Enquiring Minds: Tony Grant of London Calling, and a regular contributor to Jane Austen’s World, had written a post for me on Marble Hill House in Twickenham - but alas! I have been so delayed in getting this on the blog that we agreed he should post it himself and I will link to it… so herewith the tale of Marble Hill House, home to Henrietta Howard, mistress of George II. This all started with a conversation over Joshua Reynolds’s house, which led to Richmond Hill, and then on to Henrietta Howard and Marble Hill House, and then Pope and Swift, Horace Walpole, John Gay and the Scriblerus Club, a bit on Wordsworth and Sir Walter Scott and on to Dickens and Virginia and Leonard Woolf, and of course Jane Austen gets her required mention – you get the idea – this is cram-packed with literary tourism and as always, Tony’s fine photographs…

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The Thames from Richmond Hill

The Thames from Richmond Hill

The River Thames wends its tortuous way across England from Thames Head in Gloucestershire until it reaches the southernmost part of the North Sea. Its journey stretches for 215 miles. Finally the wide Thames Estuary which pours its contents into The North Sea is bordered on the north bank by the Essex coast and Southend on Sea and at its southern bank by the Kent coast, Sheerness and the entrance to the Medway.

Along its course The Thames passes though some beautiful English countryside before it enters the Greater London area passing by Sunbury and on to Hampton, then Hampton Court, Kingston upon Thames, Twickenham and Richmond. At last it reaches the centre of London with its iconic landmarks. The Thames, from London along its whole length, has a long history of Iron Age villages, Roman habitation, Saxon towns, and mediaeval settlements, Tudor Palaces and Georgian and Victorian Villas.  London itself began as a Roman settlement for trade, built at the nearest bridging point to the coast   where they had their port called Ritupiae (Richborough). They wanted to penetrate the hinterland north of the Thames. Indeed the names Thames which was Celtic in origin but had its Roman equivalent (Tamesas recorded in Latin as Tamesis)  and London (Londinium) come to us from Roman times.

Over the centuries the Thames outside of London has provided a beautiful Arcadian retreat for the wealthy, the famous, the aristocracy and the monarchy away from the stench and diseases prevalent in many periods of London’s history. They built palaces and grand houses and villas with adjoining estates and landscaped parks to relax and take their leisure in. Marble Hill House is a Palladian Villa built between 1724 and 1729, very close to Richmond upon Thames but on the northern bank of the Thames near Twickenham. It was built for George II’s mistress, Henrietta Howard….

Henrietta Howard

Henrietta Howard

 Continue reading…

Thank you Tony for this sun-drenched tour through London!

For more on Marble Hill House, etc,  you can look here:

Marble Hill House

Marble Hill House

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…and not to be confused with our very own MARBLE HOUSE, the William Vanderbilt’s summer “cottage” in Newport, Rhode Island:

Marble House, Newport, RI

Marble House, Newport, RI

c2013 Jane Austen in Vermont

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The Female Spectator, (Vol. 16, No. 2, Spring 2012), the newsletter of the Chawton House Library, showed up last week in my mailbox – this 12 page newsletter always offers something new and exciting to be discovered and shared!: 

1. “Chawton Chronicles: A Letter from the CEO” – Stephen Lawrence talks about what has been accomplished at the Library since its inception in 2003, especially the academic initiatives and activities and the Visiting Fellowship Programme.  And he writes of the upcoming Spring Gala of the JASNA-Greater Chicago Region where Sandy Lerner, Elizabeth Garvie, Lindsay Ashford, and Stephen will all be in attendance for the “Chawton Comes to Chicago” event [which took place on May 5 – visit the website for a photo gallery of the event – accessible to members only I’m sorry to say!]

2. A lovely tribute to Vera Quin, author of In Paris with Jane Austen (2005) and Jane Austen in London (2008), by Gillian Dow – you can read my blog post on Ms. Quin here. 

3.  “Talking Portraits at CHL” – by Sarah Parry – about the project to bring to life with actors in full costume the various portraits housed in the Library: the portraits of Mary Robinson, Elizabeth Hartley, and Catherine (Kitty) Clive were the portraits chosen for this first effort. 

[Image of  Catherine "Kitty" Clive from CHL at the BBC Collection]

4. “Curious Consumption: Cookery Books at CHL” – by Lindsey Phillips. An essay on her research into the exchange of culinary information and recipes between Britain and the West Indies; included is a recipe for “pepper pot” from Maria Eliza Ketelby Rundell’s American Domestic Cookery (ed. of 1823), which you can find here at Google Books. 

5. “The Day the Descendants Came to Tea: Revelations and Connections from a Chawton House Fellowship” – by Katharine Kittredge, on the author’s study of Melesina Trench (1768 – 1827), an Irish writer, poet and diarist, and Kittredge’s connection with her relatives after her research was published in Aphra Behn Online. [her article in ABO can be found here.]  And click here for Kittredge’s biography of Trench on the CHL website.

Melesina Trench – wikipedia

6.  “The Language of Women’s Fiction, 1750-1830” – a conference report by Christina Davidson – one hopes the papers discussed will be published at some point…?

7. “‘Not in All Things Perfect’: The North Welsh Gentry in Fiction and History” –  Mary Chadwick shares her research on a collection of English-language manuscript letters, poems, etc. written by members of a North Welsh gentry community and collected by one family, the Griffiths of Garn, and how this compares to the writing of the various novelists who set their tales in Wales (including Jane Austen in her Juvenilia!), in particular Elizabeth Hervey’s The History of Ned Evans (1796) [and recently re- published in the CHL / Pickering & Chatto series.

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And reasons to be at the CHL, and a continuing source of depression for those of us who cannot! : 

Lectures:

June 7 [today!]: Dr Laura Engel on “Much Ado About Muffs: Actresses, Accessories, and Austen”

June 20. Professor Elizabeth Kowaleski Wallace on “‘Penance and Mortification for Ever’: Jane Austen and Catholicism.”

June 25. Evening Talk and Book Launch: Dr. Katie Halsey “‘A Pair of Fine Eyes’: Sight and Insight in Jane Austen’s Novels.”

When Mr. Darcy meditates on the pleasure bestowed by “a pair of fine eyes” in Pride and Prejudice, he does so because eyes are so very expressive. In this talk, Dr Katie Halsey explores the relationship between the physical eye and the eyes of the mind in Austen’s novels.

This talk is part of Alton’s Jane Austen Regency Week, and the launch of Katie Halsey’s new book: Jane Austen and her Readers, 1786 – 1945 [and soon to be added to my bedside table...]

 Exhibition:

“Jane Austen’s Bookshop: An Exhibition” 18 June – 6 July, 2012

This exhibition explores how readers and writers in Winchester shared printed material (books, playbills, engravings &c). Men and women, young and old, gentry and middle classes, rich and poor, Protestant and Catholic – all participated. The Austen family purchased literature from the bookshop of John Burdon (today still a bookshop), while scholars at Winchester College published their works in their own city. The newly founded hospital produced annual reports, and local newspapers such as the Hampshire Chronicle promoted all kinds of publications in advertisements and reviews.

Come to Chawton House Library to learn more about book production and circulation. Find out what kind of material was published in Hampshire in the eighteenth century, and just what the Austen family might have read.

You can receive The Female Spectator from CHL by becoming a member / friend – information is here: I heartily recommend it!

@2012 Jane Austen inVermont

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From the SunLive website: New Zealand is a tad far, so had to share this with you ….

Two damaged books destined for the recycling bin have been given a glamorous new life as a Jane Austen inspired frock.

The Tauranga Library promotions assistant Katherine Tham created the eye-catching display currently on show in the city library’s window, in collaboration with the Tauranga Art Gallery to promote their latest exhibition, A La Mode.


Mmmm… somthing new to do with used books!

[images from the SunLive website]

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Well, just in time! – Wishing Mr. Dickens a very Happy Birthday! – as his 200th is celebrated all the world over…

Here are several of the events going on, already posted in my Penny Post Weekly Review, and a few more besides:

First you must begin with the Dickens 2012 website.  

And then these various exhibits, etc…

*Dickens in pictures at the Telegraph :
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/charles-dickens/8954312/Charles-Dickens-in-pictures.html

*A tour of Dickens birthplace:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/christmas/8947295/A-tour-around-the-house-where-Charles-Dickens-was-born.html

*“Celebrating Mr. Dickens” a symposium at the University of Delaware, February 18, 2012: http://www.udconnection.com/saturdaysymposium

*“Dickens in Lowell”: an exhibit [opens March 30, 2012] ,and symposium celebrating Dickens’s historic visit to Lowell, Massachusetts in 1842 – http://www.uml.edu/conferences/dickens-in-lowell/

*The Yale Center for British Art begins its 2012 film tribute to Dickens with the first film in the series “Dickens’London”, a 1924 12-minute silent film:

http://calendar.yale.edu/cal/ycba/week/20120123/All/CAL-2c9cb3cc-333ca412-0134-477237d9-00000988bedework@yale.edu/

- followed by The Pickwick Papers, from 1952: http://calendar.yale.edu/cal/ycba/week/20120123/All/CAL-2c9cb3cc-333ca412-0134-477bda0c-00000991bedework@yale.edu/

*The DeGoyler Library at Southern Methodist University is hosting a Dickens exhibit:

Charles Dickens: The First Two Hundred Years. An Exhibition from the Stephen Weeks Collection. January 19-May 12, 2012 – a catalogue is available for purchase: http://smu.edu/cul/degolyer/exhibits.htm

* A bookseller’s list of some of his works that they have for sale [Tavistock Books]: 
 http://tinyurl.com/7c2t2y3

* This one is very exciting as it combines my love of Dickens and my love of London and makes full use of my iphone capabilities: Dickens Dark London from The Museum of London:

Dickens' Dark London

http://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/Resources/app/Dickens_webpage/index.html

*The Free Library of Philadelphia’s Dickens exhibit:  http://libwww.freel library.org/dickens/

*Dickens Christmas Tour at National Gallery: http://www.npg.org.uk/whatson/event-root/december-2011/a-dickens-christmas-tour.php

*Dickens at the British Library: A Hankering after Ghosts: Charles Dickens and the Supernatural, British Library,London, until March 4 2012

at: http://www.bl.uk/whatson/exhibitions/cdickens/index.html

And here: http://www.culture24.org.uk/history%20&%20heritage/literature%20&%20music/art370174

Dickens and London at the Museum of London:

http://www.visitlondon.com/events/detail/21973327-dickens-and-london-at-the-museum-of-london

*There is also the Dickens Exhibition at The Morgan Library.  Here is the online component you can visit without leaving home: you can view 20 pages of A Christmas Carol and read a letter penned by Dickens…

Dickens at the Morgan Library

*Penelope Wilton [a.k.a. Mrs. Crawley in Downton Abbey!] reading Claire Tomalin’s Dickens biography at the BBC:  http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b017v88v

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Dickens World

Dickens World – March 7-8, 2012. and online event free for all: http://dickensworld.wordpress.com/ 

*The Dickens Dictionary – John Sutherland
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dickens-Dictionary-Z-Englands-Greatest/dp/1848313918

 * Dickens’ real life characters drawn from life? [with thanks to Tony G!]
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/feb/01/charles-dickens-real-character-names

* and see Tony’s post on Dickens on his blog London Calling, with a good number of photographs of Dickens’ homes and haunts…
http://general-southerner.blogspot.com/2012/02/charles-dickens-200years.html

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And as Masterpiece Theatre never disappoints, mark your calendars for these upcoming Dickens on Masterpiece Classic: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/greatexpectations/index.html 

  • February 26, 2012 at 9pm   (Check local listings)
    The Old Curiosity Shop
    One 90-minute episode
    A teenage girl and her grandfather lose everything to a maniacal moneylender and flee his relentless pursuit. Derek Jacobi (I, Claudius) stars as Grandfather, with Sophie Vavasseur (Northanger Abbey) as Nell and Toby Jones (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) as Quilp.

    Gillian Anderson - Great Expectations

  • April 1 & 8, 2012
    Great Expectations
    Gillian Anderson, David Suchet and Ray Winstone star in this new adaptation of Great Expectations, widely considered one of the greatest novels by Charles Dickens. Great Expectationsfollows orphan boy Pip as he rises from an apprentice to a gentleman.

    Masterpiece - Edwin Drood

  • April 15, 2012
    The Mystery of Edwin Drood
    The Mystery Of Edwin Drood is a psychological thriller about a provincial choirmaster’s obsession with 17-year-old Rosa Bud and the lengths he will go to attain her. The cast includes Matthew Rhys (Brothers & Sisters) and Julia MacKenzie (Miss Marple).

*And these resources at the Masterpiece website from the 2009 series of movies:
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/dickens/index.html

 Further Reading: [with endless links to biographies, works, criticism - and we think there is a lot on Jane Austen!]

I am currently reading Bleak House, one of those books on my TBR pile literally for the past 40 years! I have signed up for a four-session class on “Dickens and the Law” and figure I should be at least somewhat up to speed on Jarndyce and Jarndyce! – What better gift to an author than this – reading and re-reading their works 200 years after they were born!  Anyone else reading Dickens this year of his bicentennial? Please share!

Copyright @2012 Jane Austen in Vermont

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The Penny Post Weekly Review

27 January 2012

News /Gossip:

This article and book is generating so much online chat that I had to link to it:

“The First Sexual Revolution: Lust and Liberty in the 18th Century.” Adulterers and prostitutes could be executed and women were agreed to be more libidinous than men – then in the 18th century attitudes to sex underwent an extraordinary change… by Faramerz Dabhoiwala  in The Guardian:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/jan/20/first-sexual-revolution?newsfeed=true

-and you might also like to read this essay by  Tony Perrottet on “Guidebooks to Babylon” – note the references to “Harris’s List of Covent Garden Ladies”:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/22/books/review/guidebooks-to-babylon.html?pagewanted=all

-and perhaps this whole book on the subject: The Covent Garden Ladies: Pimp General Jack and The Extraordinary Story of Harris’s List by Hallie Rubenhold – Tempus Publishing, 2005:

http://www.hallierubenhold.com/my-books/55-the-covent-garden-ladies-pimp-general-jack-a-the-extraordinary-story-of-harriss-list.html

Oh dear, what would Jane say!


Downton Abbey
  ~ like Dickens, DA now has its own category!

*Downton Abbey, the house as the real star of the show:
http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=26&storycode=418569

*This article on “The Literary Pedigree of Downton Abbey” will give you several books to add to your TBR pile:
http://www.themillions.com/2012/01/the-literary-pedigree-of-downton-abbey.html

*as will this post from JASNA-New Jersey that lists several booklists out there: 
http://cnjjasna.blogspot.com/2012/01/downton-abbey-reading-list.html

*and a visit to the Masterpiece website will give you stories to read, polls to take and videos to view:
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/downtonabbey/

countdown to next show [for those counting!]: 2 days and 7 hours…


Now back to Jane Austen!

“Discovering Austen: A One-Woman Show”:

 http://www.libraryasincubatorproject.org/?p=2553

Visit The Library as Incubator Project for an interview with Kristin Hammargren on her upcoming one woman show, Discovering Austen (running Thursday, January 26 – Saturday, January 28, 7:30 p.m. at the Hemsley Theatre,821 University Avenue in Madison,WI).


The Circulating Library
:

*An article about unfinished books like Dickens’ Edwin Drood and Austen’s Sanditon:
http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=26&storycode=418771&c=2

[this lovely image from the article : by Miles Cole]

*Behind Jane Austen’s Door by Jennifer Forest – an ebook, sort of  a cross between Bill Bryson’s At Home and Amanda Vickery’s works on Georgian homelife, but lots shorter: – have just started it, will report when done…

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/123849

*Romanticism Redefined: Pickering & Chatto and The Wordsworth Circle
from the Alexander Street Press – check if your local academic or public library will be subscribing to this online resource:
http://alexanderstreet.com/products/romanticism-redefined-pickering-chatto-and-wordsworth-circle

-And read this review in Library Journal:
http://reviews.libraryjournal.com/2012/01/reference/romanticism-redefined/

*The Victorian Newsletter: http://www.wku.edu/victorian/index.php

*The British Newspaper Archive: http://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/


•           Books I am Looking Forward to

*as a great advocate of the importance of re-reading, especially Jane Austen, I am happy to add this to my TBRimmediately pile:

Patrica Meyers Spacks,  On Re-Reading:

 http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?recid=31296 , which includes a video interview with the author:

After retiring from a lifetime of teaching literature, Patricia Meyer Spacks embarked on a year-long project of rereading dozens of novels: childhood favorites, fiction first encountered in young adulthood and never before revisited, books frequently reread, canonical works of literature she was supposed to have liked but didn’t, guilty pleasures (books she oughtn’t to have liked but did), and stories reread for fun vs. those read for the classroom. On Rereading records the sometimes surprising, always fascinating, results of her personal experiment.

Spacks addresses a number of intriguing questions raised by the purposeful act of rereading: Why do we reread novels when, in many instances, we can remember the plot? Why, for example, do some lovers of Jane Austen’s fiction reread her novels every year (or oftener)? Why do young children love to hear the same story read aloud every night at bedtime? And why, as adults, do we return to childhood favorites such as The Hobbit, Alice in Wonderland, and the Harry Potter novels? What pleasures does rereading bring? What psychological needs does it answer? What guilt does it induce when life is short and there are so many other things to do (and so many other books to read)? Rereading, Spacks discovers, helps us to make sense of ourselves. It brings us sharply in contact with how we, like the books we reread, have both changed and remained the same.

-and a review here: http://www.jsonline.com/entertainment/arts/on-further-review-finding-value-in-rereading-books-an3qem9-137781373.html

and here at Austenprose: http://austenprose.com/2012/01/21/on-rereading-by-patricia-meyer-spacks-a-review/

*Just in time for Valentine’s Day:  Jane Austen on Love and Romance, edited by Constance Moore:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/161608345X/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=phillyburbs-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=161608345X

*Simon Dickie: Cruelty and Laughter: Forgotten Comic Literature and the Unsentimental Eighteenth Century.   U Chicago P, 2011. [love the cover!]

http://press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/book/chicago/C/bo11913215.html

with a review here: http://bnreview.barnesandnoble.com/t5/In-Brief/Cruelty-amp-Laughter/ba-p/6577

*The final book in Michael Thomas Ford’s trilogy of Jane as Vampire will be released on February 28, 2012:

Here is a review from Library Journal:

Ford, Michael Thomas. Jane Vows Vengeance. Ballantine. Feb. 2012.
c.288p. ISBN 9780345513670. pap. $15.

Author-turned-vampire Jane Austen wants to marry Walter, but fending off her soon-to-be mother-in-law and fear of revealing her Big Secret are sucking the fun out. Walter’s invitation to join colleagues on an architectural tour of Europe leads him to suggest a wedding-slash-honeymoon. The wedding party—including their friends Lucy and Ben and Walter’s mom, Miriam, and her dog—arrive in London anticipating the happy event, but it’s not to be. A guest from Jane’s far past arrives to object, and the remainder of the trip continues this inauspicious start, including the search for Crispin’s Needle, said to return a vampire’s soul. If the needle can be found, would it deliver a soul or kill the vampire trying?

Verdict: Ford’s final book in the trilogy (Jane Bites Back; Jane Goes Batty) is nicely connected with characters and ideas to the previous books, but it can also be read as a stand-alone. More architectural detail than literary asides, a fabulous back story for Miriam, and a sometimes overwhelming number of additional elements will surprise readers. Still, the key elements of a charmingly reluctant vampire, supportive friends, and flashes of brilliance offset by poor undead life-skills remain in full force. [Library marketing.]—Stacey Hayman, Rocky River P.L., OH

*Coming in June 2012: London: A History in Verse, edited by Mark Ford (Belknap, 2012) 

Called “the flour of Cities all,” London has long been understood through the poetry it has inspired. Now poet Mark Ford has assembled the most capacious and wide-ranging anthology of poems about London to date, from Chaucer to Wordsworth to the present day, providing a chronological tour of urban life and of English literature.

Nearly all of the major poets of British literature have left some poetic record of London: Chaucer, Spenser, Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Johnson, Wordsworth, Keats, Byron, and T.S. Eliot. Ford goes well beyond these figures, however, to gather significant verse of all kinds, from Jacobean city comedies to nursery rhymes, from topical satire to anonymous ballads. The result is a cultural history of the city in verse, one that represents all classes of London’s population over some seven centuries, mingling the high and low, the elegant and the salacious, the courtly and the street smart. Many of the poems respond to large events in the city’s history—the beheading of Charles I, the Great Fire, the Blitz—but the majority reflect the quieter routines and anxieties of everyday life through the centuries.

Ford’s selections are arranged chronologically, thus preserving a sense of the strata of the capital’s history. An introductory essay by the poet explores in detail the cultural, political, and aesthetic significance of the verse inspired by this great city. The result is a volume as rich and vibrant and diverse as London itself.

http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674065680

*Shannon Hale has a new book coming out on January 31, 2012 – Midnight in Austenland – another story with a different heroine set in the fictional Austenland as in her first Austen book… I liked that book, thought it was great fun, so will give this a try as well… $9.99 on my kindle

http://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Austenland-Novel-Shannon-Hale/dp/1608196259/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1327680403&sr=1-1

* Posh Pocket Jane Austen – 100 Puzzles and Quizzes by the Puzzle Society – came out in April 2011.

         http://www.andrewsmcmeel.com/products/?isbn=1449401236

*What Austen’s Sense and Sensibility can teach us about Love and Courtship“, at The Daily Beast: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/01/20/virgil-jane-austen-and-other-authors-can-teach-us-about-love.html

*World Book Night is taking shape for April 23, 2012.  You can see the 25 titles that will be distributed to people in participating countries:  Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is among them! – for the other titles [and a fabulous book list], go here: http://www.worldbooknight.org/about-world-book-night/wbn-2012/the-books

You can learn more about this event in the US here: http://www.us.worldbooknight.org/

*On my bedside table?: reading Bleak House, finally…


Websites and Blogs worth a look:

*“Sense and Sensibility in the Dining Room of Chawton Cottage”: by Julie Wakefield
http://janeaustenshousemuseumblog.com/2012/01/22/the-sense-and-sensibility-display-in-the-dining-room/

Austen in Academia:

NEH Seminar for college and university teachers: “Jane Austen and Her Contemporaries” June 18-July 20, 2012
http://nehseminar.missouri.edu/

“We will read four Austen novels (Pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility, Emma, and Northanger Abbey) and several novels by her contemporaries, including Anna Maria Porter, Jane West, and Mary Brunton. We will have several speakers join us in person or via Skype, including Jay Jenkins of Valancourt Books, who will talk to us about selecting, editing, and getting published a scholarly edition of an eighteenth- or nineteenth-century novel. We will also be taking a group day-trip to the Spencer Library at the Universityof Kansas.”

Museum Musings – Exhibition Trekking:

*The Cambridge University Library has just opened an exhibition Shelf Lives: Four Centuries of Collectors and their Books January 18 – June 16, 2012

http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/exhibitions/shelf_lives/

the bookshelf of Sir Geoffrey Keynes, noted bibliographer of Jane Austen (1929) – if you look closely at this bookshelf, you may notice a familiar spine or two of Austen’s works!

article here: http://www.finebooksmagazine.com/fine_books_blog/2012/01/four-centuries-of-collectors-at-cambridge.phtml

*At the The Folger Shakespeare Library, from Feb 3- May 20, 2012:
Shakespeare’s Sisters: Voices of English and European Women Writers, 1500-1700


http://www.folger.edu/woSummary.cfm?woid=721

Auction News:

Always on the lookout for London materials:

Sotheby’s London November 15, 2011: Lot 14

A New & Correct Plan of London [London, 1760], folding silk fan engraved by Richard Bennett.. Travel, Atlases, Maps & Natural History [L11405] Estimate: 4,000 – 6,000 GBP – Sold for: 11,875 GBP

Regency Life

•           Fashion

A little later than our time, but here is an interesting blog post on “Women, Fashion and Frivolity” at the Darwin and Gender blog:
http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/gender/2012/01/06/women-fashion-and-frivolity/

-Note this quote by George Darwin:

Women’s dress retains a great similarity from age to age, together with a great instability in details, and therefore does not afford so much subject for remark as does men’s dress.

 [excuse me? –  a great similarity? an instability in detail? ]

Here is the full text of George Darwin’s 1872 writing on Development in Dress
http://darwin-online.org.uk/content/frameset?viewtype=text&itemID=A570&pageseq=1


General History:

*this is fabulous! Postcards of Queen Elizabeth through the ages at Financial Times onlinehttp://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/34f15e78-3c0c-11e1-bb39-00144feabdc0.html#axzz1kFQt7sIb

[when there scroll down to view the slideshow]

[image: with thanks to Nerdy Girls!]


Charles Dickens:
– he’s everywhere!

*Dickens in pictures at the Telegraph :
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/charles-dickens/8954312/Charles-Dickens-in-pictures.html

*A tour of Dickens birthplace:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/christmas/8947295/A-tour-around-the-house-where-Charles-Dickens-was-born.html

*“Celebrating Mr. Dickens” a symposium at the Universityof Delaware, February18, 2012: http://www.udconnection.com/saturdaysymposium

*“Dickens in Lowell”: an exhibit [opens March 30, 2012] ,and symposium celebrating Dickens’s historic visit to Lowell, Massachusettsin 1842 – http://www.uml.edu/conferences/dickens-in-lowell/

*The Yale Center for British Art begins its 2012 film tribute to Dickens with the first film in the series “Dickens’London”, a 1924 12-minute silent film:

http://calendar.yale.edu/cal/ycba/week/20120123/All/CAL-2c9cb3cc-333ca412-0134-477237d9-00000988bedework@yale.edu/

- followed by The Pickwick Papers, from 1952: http://calendar.yale.edu/cal/ycba/week/20120123/All/CAL-2c9cb3cc-333ca412-0134-477bda0c-00000991bedework@yale.edu/

*The DeGoyler Library at Southern Methodist University is hosting a Dickens exhibit:

Charles Dickens: The First Two Hundred Years. An Exhibition from the Stephen Weeks Collection. January 19-May 12, 2012 – a catalogue is available for purchase: http://smu.edu/cul/degolyer/exhibits.htm

Shopping:

from Flourishcafe at Esty.com

For Fun:

*Another image of Jane! A cigarette card from the NYPL Digital Gallery, from a collection of 50 cards of “Celebrities of British History” – here is the Jane Austen card and the verso with a short biography of Austen.  You can see her illustrious company on the 49 other cards at the link below:

http://digitalgallery.nypl.org/nypldigital/dgkeysearchresult.cfm?parent_id=452639&word=

 [with thanks to JASNA-New Jersey for the link]

Specific Material Type: Photomechanical prints
Source: [Cigarette cards.] / Celebrities of British history : a series of 50
Location: Stephen A. Schwarzman Building/ George Arents Collection

*Found this on the Cotswold History blog: http://www.cotswoldhistory.com

http://www.cotswoldhistory.com/2012/01/life-is-like-a-jane-austen-novel/

Sometimes, entries from 18th century newspapers read more like the introduction to a Jane Austen novel than a Jane Austen Novel. Take this entry from the Gloucester Journal of 17 April 1797:

“Glocester, April 17 – Tuesday last was married at North Nibley, in this county, Mr John Parradice, of Wick, to Miss Sarah Knight, ofNorth Nibley, an agreeable young lady, with a large fortune.”

A groom named Paradise (almost), and a pleasant, rich lady; this story has the potential to make a rather good novel.

*A reminder that the website for the Jane Austen Centre in Bath has a section on Music Videos: http://www.janeausten.co.uk/the-jane-austen-centre/jane-austen-videos/the-music-videos/

Watch them all and choose your favorite [very hard to do!]

Copyright @2012, Jane Austen in Vermont

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