My cover story in the Times Literary Supplement includes new information on Jane Austen's family's involvements in British slavery. It adds details about her father Rev. George Austen as an Antiguan plantation co-trustee and describes her brother Henry's previously unknown anti-slavery activism. I hope you'll read and share it. I presented an extended version of the research as part of the Jane Austen & Co. "Race and the Regency" lecture series, on May 18th. Please make the time to watch the previously recorded events in this series, with incredible talks by Robert Morrison, Lyndon Dominique, Damianne Scott, Danielle Christmas, Ibi Zoboi, Patricia Matthew, Gretchen Gerzina, and Juliette Wells.
Further Reading and Links From Devoney
Selected Bibliography from Devoney Looser’s “Jane Austen’s Family, Slavery, and Anti-Slavery” lecture, with Jane Austen & Co. "Race and the Regency" lecture series (18 May 2021)
(Please consider supporting Jane Austen & Co. with your donation.)
Read the essay and listen to the interview: Devoney Looser in the Times Literary Supplement:
“Breaking the Silence: The Austen Family’s Complex Entanglements with Slavery,” TLS (21 May 2021) pp. 2-3.
and TLS Podcast Interview.
Anonymous. The Woman of Colour: A Tale. Ed. Lyndon J. Dominique. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press, 2007. [Originally published 1808]
Dominque, Lyndon J. Imoinda's Shade: Marriage and the African Woman in Eighteenth-Century British Literature, 1759-1808. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 2012.
Gerzina, Gretchen. Black London: Life Before Emancipation. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1995. Available for free download: https://www.dartmouth.edu/library/digital/publishing/books/gerzina1995/
White, Gabrielle V. Jane Austen in the Context of Abolition: 'a fling at the slave trade.’ New York: Palgrave, 2005.
Deep Dives into George Austen, James Langford Nibbs, and Morris Robinson
Coulombeau, Sophie. “’Fill up His Blanks’: Making Matthew Montagu,” [Morris Robinson information], Huntington Library Quarterly, Vol. 81, No. 4 (Winter 2018): 537-71.
Gibbon, Frank. “The Antiguan Connection: Some New Light on ‘Mansfield Park,’” The Cambridge Quarterly. Vol. 11, No. 2 (1982): 298-305.
Perry, Ruth. “Jane Austen and British Imperialism,” Monstrous Dreams of Reason: Body, Self, and Other in the Enlightenment. Ed. Mita Choudhury. Lewisburg: Bucknell UP, 2002, pp. 231-254.
Southam, Brian. “The Silence of the Bertrams: Slavery and the Chronology of Mansfield Park,” Times Literary Supplement (17 February 1995): 13-14.
Free Access Websites/Videos for Further Exploration/Research
Akin to Jane: https://www.janeaustensfamily.co.uk/akin-to-jane/akin-to-jane.index.html
British Fiction, 1800-29. http://www.british-fiction.cf.ac.uk/
Legacies of British Slavery: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/lbs/
National Portrait Gallery, for Benjamin Robert Haydon painting, “The Anti-Slavery Society Convention, 1840.” https://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portrait/mw00028/The-Anti-Slavery-Society-Convention-1840
Virtual JaneCon 2021 Playlist (on YouTube): www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLMwGZNvZFhh66CjTAN0l0ntVV4ldLrJXQ
Austen Criticism and Austen Family Biographies Mentioned
Baugh, Victoria. “Mixed-Race Heiresses and Early Nineteenth-Century Literature: Sanditon’s Miss Lambe in Context,” European Romantic Review. Vol. 29, No. 4 (2018): 449-458.
Chander, Manu Samriti and Patricia A. Matthew, “Abolitionist Interruptions: Romanticism, Slavery, and Genre,” European Romantic Review, Vol. 29, No. 4 (2018): 431-434.
Clery, E. J. Jane Austen: The Banker’s Sister. London: Biteback Publishing, 2017.
Hubback, J. H. and Edith C. Jane Austen’s Sailor Brothers: Being the Adventures of Sir Francis Austen, G. C. B. Admiral of the Fleet, and Rear-Admiral Charles Austen. London: John Lane, 1906.
Kindred, Sheila Johnson. Jane Austen’s Transatlantic Sister: The Life and Letters of Fanny Palmer Austen. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press, 2017.
Lane, Maggie. Jane Austen's Family Through Five Generations. London; Robert Hale, 1984.
LeFaye, Deirdre, ed. A Chronology of Jane Austen and her Family, 1600–2000. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.
Slothouber, Linda. Jane Austen, Edward Knight, & Chawton: Commerce & Community. Gaithersburg, MD: Woodpigeon Publishing, 2015.
Devoney Looser’s Mentioned Recent Work on Austen and the Austen Family
The Great Courses: The Life and Works of Jane Austen (24 30-minute lectures, The Teaching Company, 2021). (720 min.)
The Making of Jane Austen. Johns Hopkins UP, 2017. 304 pages. Paperback, 2019 (with new afterword).
“Fame in the Family: Jane Austen’s Political Legacy,” Victorians: A Journal of Culture and Literature. 133 (Summer 2018): 7–23. DOI 10.1353/vct.2018.0002
“Pride and Prostitutes” (co-authored with Ruth Knezevich), Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine 76 (Jul/Aug 2015), pp. 23-30.
“Jane Austen’s Afterlife, West Indian Madams, and the Literary Porter Family: Two New Letters from Charles Austen” (with Ruth Knezevich), Modern Philology, vol. 112, no. 3 (2015), pp. 554–568.
(Full CV here: https://isearch.asu.edu/profile/284225/cv )
Ways to Stay Connected to Devoney
Free author newsletter on Substack: https://devoney.substack.com/
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/Devoney/
Great Courses: https://www.thegreatcourses.com/janeausten
Virtual Jane Con Lives On!
Does it have to be over? No! The full program playlist from this past weekend's Virtual JaneCon is now up, including my first attempt at YouTube Live. It's no picture of perfection, but it was great fun! With thanks to Bianca Hernandez-Knight for her vision and labor in year two of this fabulous online event. Sign up for info about future Virtual JaneCons here.