Evidence A: Finding Aid                                         

Jane Austen Pathfinder

                                          Jane Austen: Her life and works


San Diego Public Library (Clairemont branch) Pathfinder



JANE AUSTEN (1775-1817)

is the widely celebrated 19th century English novelist of “Pride and Prejudice” fame, a work which has been reproduced on stage, television and film countless times. Like Shakespeare, her work brought her little fame or respect during her lifetime and little is known about her actual life.


BACKGROUND: Jane Austen was born on December 16th in 1775 and died July 18, 1817 after a recurring battle with illness.  She was close to her upper middle class family including her father William George, a clergyman. She was educated by him and her older brothers. She spent most of her life in Hampshire aside from a brief unhappy time in Bath following her father’s retirement. She began her literary career at age 15 with a novel entitled Love and Friendship which poked fun at fashionable sentimental novels of the time. Her first completed novel was Sense and Sensibility (1811), followed by Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814), and Emma (1816). They were all published anonymously. Her two additional novels, Northanger Abby and Persuasion, were published after her death. 

Her novels mainly featured irony, comedy of manners featuring a small group of characters focused on courtships and marriage, and biting commentary about the social institution at her time.  She never married nor had children. She was especially close to her spinster sister Cassandra whose letters to and from her sister are the most revealing of her private life.



The Cambridge Guide to literature in English. 3rd ed. / edited by Dominic Head. Head, Dominic. Cambridge [UK] ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2006. 54-55

“Jane Austen.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 10 Dec 2008, 19:50 UTC. 10 Dec 2008 <http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jane_austen&oldid=257114031>.

Kollins, KK. “Jane Austen.” World Book Encyclopedia. Chicago, IL.  : World Book Inc, C2009





Emma                                                                                                                              FIC/ AUSTEN

Comedy of manners featuring Emma Woodhouse’s matchmaking pursuits

Mansfield Park                                                                                                                 FIC / AUSTEN

Shy Fanny Price is thrown into high society when sent to live with her wealthy uncle

Pride and Prejudice                                                                                                           FIC/AUSTEN

Tells the tale of Elizabeth’s famed romance with Mr. Darcy

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen/ adapted by Fern Siegel                                              J Fic/Siegel

Sense and Sensibility                                                                                                        FIC/ AUSTEN

Two sisters, one with sense and the other with sensibility, fumble in their pursuit for love

Persuasion                                                                                                                        FIC/ AUSTEN

Tale of Anne Eliott’s doomed romance with naval officer Frederick Wentworth

Northanger Abby                                                                                                             FIC/ AUSTEN

Austen’s earliest work; Gothic mystery novel centered on Catherine Moreland as she visits the estate of the man she loves




Jane Austen by Carol Shields (Biography)                                                                       B/AUSTEN

Jane Austen’s World:  the life and times of England’s most popular author                        B/AUSTEN

Jane Austen and her World                                                                                              B/Austen

What Jane Austen ate and Charles Dickens knew: from fox hunting to whist: the facts of daily life from 19th century England           





See Articles and Databases http://www.sandiego.gov/public-library/catalog-databases/index.shtml (also linked from SDPL home page)


From your home computer, login using your borrower id (the 14 digit number on the front of your library card) and your pin (usually the last 4 digits of your phone number). For further assistance, see reference librarian.

Sample key search terms: Jane Austen, Jane Austen’s life, Regency Period, Austen Criticisms and Interpretations



Pride and Prejudice starring Colin Firth (BBC Videorecording)                          DVD 791.4372/Pride  

Becoming Jane starring Anne Hathaway (Videorecording)                                 DVD 791.4372/Becoming

Mansfield Park starring Billie Piper (Videorecording)                                         DVD 791.4372/Mansfield

Pride and Prejudice starring Keira Knightly                                                        DVD 791.4372/Pride

Pride and Prejudice (BBC Videorecording)                                                       DVD 791.4372/Pride

Sense and Sensibility (BBC Videorecording)                                                     DVD 791.4372/Sense

Northanger Abby starring Peter Firth (BBC Videorecording)                             DVD 791.4372/Northanger

Sense and Sensibility by Ang Lee (Videorecording)                                           DVD 791.4372/Sense

Emma starring Gyneth Paltrow                                                                           DVD 791.4372/Emma


THE INTERNET (includes criticisms and commentary on Jane Austen and her works):

Jane Austen: Republic of Pemberley http://www.pemberley.com/

Jane Austen Society of North America http://www.jasna.org/

Jane Austen Center in Bath, England http://www.janeausten.co.uk/

The Victorian Web: http://www.victorianweb.org/previctorian/austen/austenov.html

Jane Austen on the About.com network http://search.about.com/fullsearch.htm?terms=Jane%20Austen

Finding Jane Austen http://www.findingjaneausten.com/

Selected Jane Austen Bibliography http://www.pemberley.com/janeinfo/janebblg.html

Jane Austen World Blog http://janeaustensworld.wordpress.com/

Thoughts on Jane Austen Blog http://www.janeausten-forevermore.com/

Jane Austen Chronology http://lang.nagoya-u.ac.jp/~matsuoka/Austen-Chro.html

Health and Wealth and Jane Austen http://www.starcourse.org/abbey/HWinJA.html

Jane Austen: A Cambridge History http://www.bartleby.com/222/index.html

Extensive Gale Biography of Austen http://www.gale.cengage.com/free_resources/whm/bio/austen_j.htm

Today in Literature: Jane Austen http://www.todayinliterature.com/biography/jane.austen.asp

For Jane Austen Fans http://www.mollands.net/



Jane Austen: a collection of critical essays by Ian Watt                                                        823/Austen



Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler                                                        


Austen Fan fiction website                                                                              


Clueless (videorecording; loosely based on “Emma”)