The Jane Austen Society: 1996 conference, "Jane Austen's Men"

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From: Elroy Nieweg

The Jane Austen Society of North America will hold its 1996 Annual General Meeting at the Omni Hotel in Richmond, Virginia, on October 11-13; the theme will be "Jane Austen and Her Men". It'll open on Friday (Oct. 11) with an afternoon tea and lively discussion of the men in JA's novels (Laura Tracy, who has conducted a series of lectures at the Smithsonian, will lead the discussion), and ends on Sunday (Oct 13) with a closing breakfast and a special tour of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. In between, we'll be entertained, amused, and educated by a number of fine speakers. Our keynoter is Brian Southam, chairman of the British Jane Austen Society and noted Austen critic. Southam will tell us why he concludes that a young Jane Austen wrote the play Sir Charles Grandison [a brief adaptation from Samuel Richardson's massive novel of that name; until recently Austen's niece Anna Austen (Lefroy) had been assumed to be the play's author], and then assess the degree to which her male characters fit, or fail to fit, the ideal of Sir Charles. Beverly Taylor and Susan Navarette, both from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and George Holbert Tucker, author of Jane Austen the Woman will be among our speakers. Another presenter will be Dr. Donald Bittner, Command and Staff College, United States Marine Corps, Quantico. His talk will be titled "The Lady and The Sword: Jane Austen's Portrayal of the Royal Navy and The Royal Marines". We will have a Regency Fair and a special tour of the Faberge egg exhibit in the Virginia Museum of Art. Deborah Kaplan of George Mason University, and author of Jane Austen Among Women, will speak on "Jane Austen Among Men". Another of the scheduled presenters is Beverly Taylor, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who will present "Heartbreakers, Caretakers, and Nestmakers: The Men of Mansfield Park and Persuasion". On Sunday morning, JASNA's own Pulitzer prize-winning Carol Shields will draw on John Grey's book Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus to entertain us with her talk on "Martians in Jane Austen".

The AGM Art Contest:

Capture one or more of Jane Austen's men in artwork. -- Send a brief description and/or a photograph of your entry on or before September 1st, and then bring the actual artwork to the meeting so it can be displayed and judged during the weekend. The contest is open to JASNA members and non-members, and to all forms of visual art.

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