The Prime Of Miss Jane Austen (1 x 60′) – To mark the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s first novel, Sense And Sensibility, Professor Amanda Vickery, one of the leading chroniclers of Georgian England, explores the ebb and flow of Austen’s popularity and the hold her fiction has on people today.
In this programme, Vickery considers what it is about Austen’s plots and characters that continue to delight, amuse, console and provoke. Her fans insist her current popularity is due to the timelessness of the fictional world Austen created, but for Vickery the question is: why have her novels gone in and out of fashion? What interests Amanda is how different periods and generations have looked for their own reflection in the characters and plots of the novels. She wants to work out what that says about them, as well as about Austen.
Interviewing a variety of literary scholars, film directors and costumed devotees who attend the Austen conventions, Vickery also views the Sotherby’s sale of an incredibly rare, handwritten manuscript of an unfinished Austen novel.
The Prime Of Miss Jane Austen is part of Books On The BBC 2011.
TX: Summer / Autumn 2011