Jane Austen’s Social Networks

On July 18th two hundred years ago, at a house in Winchester, Jane Austen died at the relatively young age of 41.  She had laid down her pen twelve chapters into her final novel (The Brothers, later published as Sanditon) in March of 1817, due to her worsening health, and it would remain unfinished.  Her…

Image Gallery of the Week: Kisses

Happy Valentine’s Day to all of our readers!  We may have gone quiet for a while, but we’ve not been idle – just busy working on a few new projects. As an apology, please enjoy a selection of our favourite kisses from Flickr Commons!  Some of these are quite romantic… others, not so much.  (Perhaps…

Halloween Images Collection: strange and unsettling illustrations

We here on the blog, as you may have noticed, spend a lot of time trawling through the images on Flickr Commons, particularly the massive sets of public-domain book illustrations from the British Library Labs and the Internet Archive.  This is a fairly enjoyable pursuit most of the time, but over the past year we’ve…

Forgotten Fiction Friday: Flaxman Low and The Story of the Moor Road

“…I think I may say that I am the first student in this field of inquiry who has had the boldness to break free from the old and conventional methods, and to approach the elucidation of so-called supernatural problems on the lines of natural law.” Psychological detective and supernatural specialist Flaxman Low is the creation…

Image Collection of the Week: The Victorian illustrator whose designs came to life

Born in London in 1846, Kate Greenaway exhibited a prodigious talent for delicate illustration. She attended the School of Art in South Kensington and completed her education in the Slade School of Art at University College London. She is now celebrated for her charming and nostalgic illustrations of childhood in the English countryside. The British library and the…

Nursing mothers: an image collection

In honour of World Breastfeeding Week 2016 (a day late – but better late than never!), here is a small collection of vintage public-domain images of women nursing their babies, from the British Library Labs and Internet Archive images collections. ix An honourable mention must also go to Gillray’s 1796 “The Fashionable Mamma“, which I…

A Portrait of the Project: our official website is announced!

I’m delighted to announce that the Nation, Genre and Gender Project’s official website is now up and running! We created this site (in association with Vermillion Design) in order to showcase some of what we do here at Nation, Genre and Gender, when we’re not overthinking Jane Austen’s novels or identifying weird gender tropes in…

Insult of the Week: inferior poets are absolutely fascinating

Ah, poetry.  One of the great literary forms, with a history stretching back as far as the earliest written word!  Beloved genre of such giants as Sappho, Homer, Chaucer, and the anonymous author of The Poetic Works of a Weird (1827).  Being writers themselves, surely our novelists must have a healthy respect for the poetical…

A Net of Influence: interreference between 18th and 19th-century novels

As a taster of the content that’s going up on our shiny new website, here’s an image that I put together earlier: This, as you can probably tell, is a draft version, but what it shows is a map of interreference between novels and novelists in our corpus. Writers, unsurprisingly, are generally people who enjoy…