Jane Austen writing an “improper” novel? Find out why her overlooked Lady Susan, which depicts the exploits of England’s worst coquette, is worth experiencing; how its presence fits in the larger context of the 18th-century novel’s development; and why it can be considered Austen’s literary “road not taken.”More
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The Best Great Courses Lecture I've Come Across
I would absolutely listen to this lecture again. This is an informative, insightful take on Austen's short epistolary novel Lady Susan. Allen's performance is engaging, and I was surprised by a lot of what I learned. Highly recommend!
I completely agreed with Allen's take on Lady Susan as a lovable villain. She charms the reader as easily as she charms her acquaintances with wit, cunning, and humor, despite her compromised moral compass. I also enjoyed Allen's emphasis on Lady Susan as a female-driven work. Not only is Lady Susan smarter than everyone else in the novel combined, the men are mostly clueless and peripheral.
Allen's speculation on how Austen's career (and 19th century Brit Lit generally) would have differed if she'd published Lady Susan when written was especially interesting.
I listened to this lecture in one sitting and would have listened to much more! I will be looking up Allen's other lectures.
- Amazon Customer