‘Prejudice’ Exposed? Jane Austen’s Links to Slavery ‘Interrogated’Historians in the News
tags: slavery, literature, Jane Austen, English literature, Caribbean history
Historians are spilling the tea over Jane Austen’s connections with slave plantations.
A museum dedicated to the “Pride & Prejudice” author, located at her old home in the Hampshire village of Chawton, is reportedly investigating the Austen family’s place in “Regency era colonialism,” as evidenced by Austen’s love of tea, clothing and other refinements.
Before father George Austen was a clergyman of a local parish, he was a trustee of an Antigua sugar plantation, where slaves from Africa worked the fields to cultivate the prized ingredient that would be part of the Austens’ tea habit.
Introduced to the West by way of China, tea became an English obsession by the early 19th century, particularly once they learned how to grow crops of their own throughout territories in India, Sri Lanka and Africa.
Austen’s penchant for cotton clothing — more “products of empire” — is also said to be a sign of her family’s connection to plantations in the Caribbean.
The director of Jane Austen’s House museum, Lizzie Dunford, told the Telegraph that they intend to spotlight this little-discussed aspect of Austen’s personal story.
“This is just the start of a steady and considered process of historical interrogation,” said Dunford.
comments powered by Disqus
- Critical Race Theory: A Brief History
- Texas Lawmakers Used MLK’s Words To Attack Critical Race Theory. MLK III Says His Father’s Work Actually Supports It
- After a Mock Slave Auction and a Resolution Against Racism, Battle Against "Critical Race Theory" in a Small Town
- Revisiting the 1976 Chowchilla School Bus Kidnapping
- Opinion: Students Need to Learn About the Haters and the Helpers of our History
- Washington and Lee Names New Academic Center for Teaching Race after Ted Delaney
- Revisiting Portland a Year after the Rioting
- The Unmaking of Biblical Womanhood: Prof. Beth Allison Barr's Historical Challenge to Evangelical Gender Roles
- Lynn Burnett Project to Examine Examples of White Antiracism in U.S. History
- Haiti, Cuba, and the History of U.S. Involvement in the Caribbean (Virtual Event July 29)