Monday, April 02, 2007

oh, and she could use a bit more mascara too.

the "homely" portrait...and the Photoshopped version.
she actually looks a little thinner too, doesn't she?


i'm a huge fan of Jane Austen's works. Persuasion might very well be my favorite book (and movie) ever. i used to watch the A & E version of Pride and Prejudice every sunday as i folded my laundry, moon-eyed and swooning as Mr. Darcy boldly declared his love for Elizabeth Bennett.

an interesting article in this past sunday's New York Times about Jane Austen's "looks." a British publisher recently decided to Photoshop her portrait as they found it too "homely." was she pretty? was she not? and why does it matter to so many of her fans to think of her as attractive?

i suppose i'd like to think that she was a lovely, graceful creature who chose not to marry in order to engage in her literary pursuits untethered, but i suppose it is quite a bit more plausible that she was quite plain and wrote these books, not just to critique the circus of society, but to create a place for herself in it - the only place she might ever have, being that "Austen lived in an age when a woman’s physical attractiveness was, next to her fortune, her greatest asset." (and sometimes i'm wondering if things have changed?)

and having these assets was almost absolutely necessary if she ever wanted "snag herself a man," as my Grandma Horsfall would say.

1 comment:

Eta Piscium said...

Austen lived in an age when a woman’s physical attractiveness was, next to her fortune, her greatest asset." (and sometimes i'm wondering if things have changed?)



No, they haven't. Great blog. I'm enjoying the archive.