1st Edition

Jane Austen and Critical Theory

Edited By Michael Kramp Copyright 2021
    278 Pages
    by Routledge

    278 Pages
    by Routledge

    Jane Austen and Critical Theory is a collection of new essays that addresses the absence of critical theory in Austen studies—an absence that has limited the reach of Austen criticism. The collection brings together innovative scholars who ask new and challenging questions about the efficacy of Austen’s work. This volume confronts mythical understandings of Austen as "Dear Aunt Jane," the early twentieth-century legacy of Austen as a cultural salve, and the persistent habit of reading her works for advice or instruction. The authors pursue a diversity of methods, encourage us to build new kinds of relationships to Austen and her writings, and demonstrate how these relationships might generate new ideas and possibilities—ideas and possibilities that promise to expand the ways in which we deploy Austen. The book specifically reminds us of the vital importance of Austen and her fiction for central concerns of the humanities, including the place of the individual within civil society, the potential for new identities and communities, the urgency to address racial and sexual oppression, and the need to imagine more just futures.

    Chapter 4 of this book is freely available as a downloadable Open Access PDF at http://www.taylorfrancis.com under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives (CC-BY-NC-ND) 4.0 license. 


    List of Contributors

    Introduction by Michael Kramp

    The Cultural Work of Austen's Life and Afterlives

    Lady Oracle: Jane Austen as High Priestess of Modern Romance or Secret Icon of Female Independence

    Megan A. Woodworth

    Jane Austen in Australia and New Zealand

    Joanne Wilkes

    "This is 1806, for Heaven’s sake!": The Tension between Nostalgia and Feminism in Austen Adaptation and YouTube FanVids

    Rebecca White

    Identity, Relationality, and Community

    Logical Time in Austen's Persuasion: Desire and the Unproductive Anxious Interval

    Isabelle Michalski and David Sigler

    Pride and Prejudice and the Comedy of the Universal

    Daniela Garofalo

    Autonomy Will Set You Free, Or Will It?: Autonomy, Precarity and Survival

    Enit Karafili Steiner

    The Shrewdness of Sophia Croft in Persuasion

    Natasha Duquette

    The Known and the Possible in Austen

    Austen’s Theory of Change

    Kate Singer

    Jane Austen’s Angry Inch: The Nonbinary Son-to-Come

    Chris Washington

    Pleasure and Danger: Theorizing Adolescence in and Through Austen

    Shawn Lisa Maurer

    The Vitality of Austen

    The Austenian Mise-en-Scène

    Christopher C. Nagle

    Wickham Then and Now: From Historical Masculinity to Toxic Masculinity 

    Kit Kincade

    Jane Austen, Feminist Legal Philosopher

    Sarah Ailwood



    Michael Kramp is Professor of English at Lehigh University, USA. He is the author of Disciplining Love: Austen and the Modern Man (2007) and editor of Jane Austen and Masculinity (2017).