Reading the great British writer’s novels is “an education in good character formation.”
The novel, which on the surface seems to mimic the popular romantic fiction of the day, actually reveals the deeper, timeless truths about human nature. Rather, Lorraine Murphy, associate professor of English at Hillsdale College, says in the first lecture, Austen criticizes the cheap sentimentality of that genre and sets out to examine the following questions in her book:
- How does the reading of novels color our expectations of life?
- How does the careful or careless use of language shape our experience of the world in which we live?
- How might we best learn to read and speak and write in ways that illuminate the truth rather than obscure it?
The course sets about answering these same questions, and in so doing revealing what Austen found to be the “essential truths about human nature” and the importance of “virtues such as courage, prudence, generosity, and justice.” Reading a Jane Austen novel is, accordingly, “an education in good character formation.”
To watch this free, 5-lecture series visit this link to Hillsdale College’s online lectures.
Since you are here…
…we’d like to have one more word with you. We are excited to report that Aleteia’s readership is growing at a rapid rate, world-wide! Our team proves its mission every day by providing high-quality content that informs and inspires a Christian life. But quality journalism has a cost and it’s more than ads can cover. We want our articles to be accessible to everyone, free of charge, but we need your help. To continue our efforts to nourish and inspire our Catholic family, your support is invaluable. Become an Aleteia Patron today for as little as $3 a month. May we count on you?