was begun about February of 1811 and completed in summer of 1813. It was published in 1814, by Thomas Egerton, who had also put our her previous novels. After he published
in 1815, the more prestigious publisher, John Murray, issued a second edition of MP in 1816.
Unlike most of Austen's other novels, Mansfield Park
has not enjoyed numerous significant modern adaptation for movies or television. The best of the three versions is the BBC's MP, which came out in 1983. Although the acting and script are very good, the production values are not up to HD, sad to say. I thought Sylvestra LeTouzel's Fanny was a tour de force
, as was Anna Massey's Mrs. Norris. It is available on DVD and well worth watching.
The 1999 film, the work of director Patricia Rozema, is frankly just not Mansfield Park
at all. Fanny morphs into a young Jane Austen, writing some of her letters and early works. It was filmed at Kirby Hall, an interesting partial ruin of a house, which was the only good part of it, at first glance.
After my first viewing, I read more about Rozema's vision for the film and when I watched it again, I could see some of her points, including her points on the evils of slavery. But it wasn't -- and isn't Mansfield Park
by Jane Austen.
When the 2007 television version starring Billie Piper was screened, I was appalled. And I haven't given it a second try. Piper may be popular and an excellent actress -- but the part was not Fanny Price at all. If some of you loved it, please tell me why -- I might even give it another try! or not.
While I was playing around with my unhappy ideas about these adaptations, I came across a blog from Barnes and Noble that ranks the leading men in Austen's novels. To inject a note of fun in this post, take a look and click here
Do you agree??? Wentworth over Darcy? Bingley over Tilney? What are they thinking?
Anyway, the best thing to do is READ the novel. Enjoy it on several levels: the beauty of the prose, the excellent delineation of character, the subtlety of the references to current events in that moment of history, and much much more
A very worthy blog can be found here
. Sarah Emsley teaches at Harvard and concentrates her activities on Jane Austen and Edith Wharton. She and her many guest bloggers will discuss many fascinating aspects of this 200-year-old novel that still excites readers and scholars today. Sarah Emsley has a slew of cover pictures on her Pinterest page as well.
Finally, I hope you can join us when the Jane Austen Society of North America holds the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Montreal next October 10-12, 2014. I am looking forward very much to the events planned, among which will be my presentation along with Kim Wilson. for More Information, click here
Later on I will tease you a bit about our upcoming talk.. But for now, enjoy all the info on Mansfield Park, which can be found all over the blogosphere.