Presentation on theme: "Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen December 16, 1775 – July 18, 1817 Born in Steventon, England She lived to be 41 years old She had 1 sister named Cassandra."— Presentation transcript:
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen December 16, 1775 – July 18, 1817 Born in Steventon, England She lived to be 41 years old She had 1 sister named Cassandra and 6 brothers Father was a clergyman and mother was from a wealthy upper-class family All of her family were avid readers of literature and they discussed what they read often.
Background Info. Austen had a gift for writing about the “ordinary people” that she knew best, members of the English middle class, who had risen to the level of land-owners. Early on, she would write parodies of popular literature for the entertainment of her family. She was particularly good at imitating romantic or sentimental novels. She began writing her own full-length novels in her early twenties.
Background Info. Cont. During the 1790’s, Austen wrote 2 of her most popular novels Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice. Both books were initially rejected by publishers but after revising the stories, Austen’s books were published in 1811 and 1813. When Austen was 21 she met the nephew of neighbors named Tom Lefroy. They fell in love, yet his family intervened and sent him away. Their marriage would have been considered impractical due to the fact that neither one had money at the time. Lefroy was dependent upon a great-uncle in Ireland to fund his education. They never saw each other again.
Jane Austen Austen received her only marriage proposal in 1802 from a friend of the family, Harris Bigg-Wither. There were practical advantages, mainly financial, for Austen and her family for the marriage but she declined his offer because she knew that she did not love him. What does that say about her character?
19 th Century British Customs Women were expected to marry and have children, however there was a shortage of available men. Census figures for the period reveal there were far more men than women. 3 reasons – mortality rate for boys was far higher than girls, many men served in the armed forces abroad, and men were more likely to immigrate than women. When a woman got married her wealth was passed to her husband and if she worked after marriage, her earnings belonged to her husband. It was extremely difficult for a woman to obtain a divorce. Men had the right to divorce their wives for adultery but women did not. Once divorced, the children became the man’s property and the mother could be prevented from seeing her children