Jon Spence's fascinating biography of Jane Austen paints an intimate portrait By: Jon Spence Media of Becoming Jane Austen PDF eBook (Watermarked). Becoming Jane Austen by Jon Spence; 1 edition; First published in ; Subjects: In library, English Novelists, Family, Accessible book. (Download ebook) Becoming Jane Austen *Download PDF | ePub | DOC | audiobook | ebooks Copper CavalierI enjoyed this biography by Jon Spence.
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Loosely based on Jon Spence's biography Becoming Jane Austen, the film faces the problem of the scarcity of information on Jane Austen's life. Jon Spence's fascinating biography of Jane Austen paints an intimate portrait of the much-loved novelist. Spence's meticulous research has, perhaps most. That's what I loved about Becoming Jane Austen. Jon Spence tells the familiar story of Jane Austen's life in a fresh way. By focusing on her.
On the other hand, I found the author's personal explanations enormously helpful in my own search to satisfy my curiosity. Many of his ideas made sense to me, and he pointed out small things that I probably never would have considered, or even noticed. The big question seems to be: did Jane really have a secret understanding with Tom Lefroy? To watch "Becoming Jane", the movie inspired by this book, you'd think so.
But after reading the book, itself so controversially full of conjecture, I can only say that the movie is almost entirely fiction. It's a good movie, very enjoyable, and containing enough heart-squeezing moments to classify it as a true chick flick.
But it's not true. It takes one small segment of Jane's life, one with very little source material, and only suggested in Spence's book, and turns it into a two-hour movie with characters who apparently never existed Lady Gresham and situations that never arose the elopement.
We don't know exactly what went on with Tom Lefroy. He never did come back to Stephenton, but Jon Spence submits rather compelling evidence that they did have a deeper relationship than anyone might have supposed.
I'm inclined to believe him, especially since Jane's sister Cassandra destroyed most of her letters from that period, apparently at her request, and the few we have do hint at a relationship with Tom.
Jane accepted a proposal of marriage from Harris Bigg-Wither, a family friend. The next day she retracted her promise because she didn't love him. The marriage would have been a good match, financially secure.
That was the reality for women in early 19th century England. Charlotte's options are limited. This was the more realistic future for someone like Elizabeth Bennet instead of the gorgeous fairytale of marriage to Mr Darcy. The story of Jane's career as a novelist is well-told here. Her satisfaction in her earnings reflects her desire for independence. She left everything she owned to Cassandra in her will.
After all, think of those letters like your private communication. She just had to delete them manually. We find out that another man named Mr.
Oh no, there's been an error
Wisley, by the way, is played by Laurence Fox. Both Lady Gresham and Mr.
In truth, Jane Austen had quite a few men who tried to woo her. A lot of historians believed that John had a romantic interest in Jane while others suggested perhaps they were just good friends.
Or there was a man named Samuel Blackall, who was described as an awkward clergyman and had a thing for Jane. Probably the closest to the fictional Mr. He was a nice and well-off young man who lived near the Austen family. At one point he even went so far as to propose to Jane. In the movie, Jane turns down Mr.
But then, after a night to sleep on it, Jane decided to rescind her acceptance so the two were never married. So the result was the same, but quite different paths to get there. According to the movie, George is deaf and Jane communicates with him through sign language. Oh wait, did I say fictional?
George was a real person. So she breaks it off with Tom. What little we do know of their relationship comes from just a couple of surviving letters between Jane and Cassandra, as well as some information other historians have been able to dig up. From that, we know that neither Tom or Jane had much money.
We get another peek at the end of their relationship just a few days later. My tears flow as I write at the melancholy idea. Chute called here yesterday.
I wonder what he means by being so civil. There is a report that Tom is going to be married to a Lichfield lass.
John Lyford and his sister bring Edward home today, dine with us, and we shall all go together to Ashe. I understand that we are to draw for partners. I shall be extremely impatient to hear from you again, that I may know how Eliza is, and when you are to return. According to the movie, though, we get the implication that Tom Lefroy was the inspiration behind Mr.
The final text on screen says that Tom named his eldest daughter Jane.
That is true. Tom and Mary would end up having eight children in total, the others being Anne Lefroy who was born on April 25th, , Thomas Paul Lefroy, born on December 31st, , Jeffrey Lefroy, born on March 25th, , George Lefroy, born on May 26th, , Benjamin Lefroy, born on March 25th, and last, but certainly not least, Mary Lefroy, born on December 19th, Sadly, Benjamin never lived past his infancy, though, so many records list Tom and Mary as having seven children.
It then goes on to say that neither Jane or Cassandra ever married. That is all true…well, sort of.Then, at some point, she picked up the manuscript again and kept writing.
His birthday was January 8th, , so he was exactly 23 days younger than Jane. He had recently separated from his long-term male partner.
What I really liked about the book was the way it drew parallels between her family life and her novels, showing possible inspiration for certain characters and situations.
He was a nice and well-off young man who lived near the Austen family. But if this is true, then he's an utter cad for leaving her high and dry to wait for him, never contacting her again, and marrying someone else.
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