About Jane Austen:
Life in the 1800’s
Free Indirect Discourse
Northanger Abbey and Jane Austen Today:
In my syllabus, I chose to incorporate a number of things to help readers understand the ideas presented in Northanger Abbey. These ideas, which include background on the author, the Gothic genre, life in the 1800s, themes presented in the book, free indirect discourse, and Jane Austen and Northanger Abbey today. I felt all of these ideas reflected on the book and will give audiences a deep understanding of Jane Austen and NA.
I decided to include information on Jane Austen because it is important to understand where the author is coming from and why he or she writes the way they write. Through understanding Austen, readers will be able to analyze why certain aspects of her works are the way they are. I added other works to my page because audiences may decide they love Jane Austen and want to read more. A timeline is important to include because it is helpful to know what was going on during the time Austen’s books were written and published. A general background on everything is useful to have to be able to understand ideas presented in the novels.
The Gothic genre is an idea presented all throughout the novel. It is mentioned many times by the protagonists. The main protagonist uses the Gothic genre all through the book. It is important to understand what it is because without it, a big part of the plot would be misunderstood and misinterpreted. I included examples of Gothic usage from Austen’s other works to show how vital it is to the plot and how often it is used. Gothic genre is used today, by showing examples of how it is used today I hope readers will compare and contrast ideas presented then versus ideas presented now. The Gothic genre is a reoccurring theme throughout the entire novel and influences the way readers will understand how it is written.
All of Jane Austen’s novels are set in the same time period, understanding how things worked in the 1800s is important to know. In Northanger Abbey, ideas of marriage and the treatment of women are common themes. By knowing what it was like in this time, readers will be able understand the way these characters lived. Money, love, and marriage all were issues in the 1800s. By including sources about these topics, readers will be able to understand why and how things worked in this time.
Common themes in Northanger Abbey include innocence, youth, and gothic parody. The whole novel is essentially a parody of the gothic genre, the main protagonists’ favorite genre. The main protagonist is the essence of youth and innocence. I felt it was important to include links about these topics to give readers a better understanding of the themes occurring in the novel. These ideas are, in summary, what the novel is about.
Jane Austen uses free indirect discourse to write her stories in a way that will shed a different light on characters. I wanted to include information this topic because most readers will likely not understand why certain parts of the book are written differently. I included an examples link to further readers understanding of free indirect discourse. I want readers to understand why and how Jane Austen uses this form of writing in her novels. Lastly, I felt it was useful to add close readings to show readers how they can find free indirect discourse on their own.
Many modern versions of Jane Austen novels have been presented in the form of movies today. I added links to two different versions of Northanger Abbey for readers to compare the different aspects of the movies and the novel. I want readers to know that people interpret their reading differently from others. By including links to a few Jane Austen movies, readers will be able to see all the differences and decide which they like most.
These different topics will give readers a solid guide to understanding Northanger Abbey. With these sources, readers will be able to interpret their own versions of the novel.