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Brief Lives


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About the Author

Fiona Stafford is a Fellow and Tutor in English at Somerville College, Oxford.


'One of the best overviews of the author and her work that you are likely to read.' - Jane Austen Society of Australia 'This beautifully produced book starts with a real advantage. Full-length biographies of Jane Austen, like those of Shakespeare, immediately face the problem of what do with the years in their subject's life for which there is scant (sometimes no) source material. Having solved this by imaginative re-creation, they confront the opposite problem: how to restrict literary analysis of the plays or the novels without reducing a masterpiece such as Hamlet or Emma to a reductive summary. Fiona Stafford's slim volume has no such difficulties: the major focus of this sympathetic study is Jane Austen's writing, which is used to provide the chronological frame for the life, and the treatment of the novels is profound enough to stir the reader into intellectual assent or argumentative disagreement.' -Times Literary Supplement '...short and sweet' - The Jane Austen Society 'This brief life by Fiona Stafford, with its rich insights and its mine of fascinating detail, is one of the best overviews of the author and her work that you are likely to read.' - JASA Chronicle

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