Jane Austen's early nineteenth-century novels marked a turning point in the history of the genre and paved the way for the blossoming of the form in the decades to follow. As a result, her work has long occupied a central place in the study of English literature, as well as entertaining generations of readers.
*Outlines the social, historical and literary contexts within which Austen wrote
*Offers an extensive, insightful guide to her novels
*Explores critical issues related to her work, from gender and class to ideology and imperialism
*Surveys the criticism of Austen's work and offers suggestions for further reading
*Traces adaptations of Austen's novels on film.
Robert P. Irvine's guide to this major novelist and her work is essential reading for any serious student of English literature. Accessible and broad-ranging, it is suitable both for students examining one novel at an introductory level, as invaluable extended reading, or for those beginning a more detailed study of Austen, as a reference and guide to a vast and varied critical field.