Course | Austen’s Mansfield Park: A Vindication of the Rights of Fanny Price

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Date / Time

  • February 27, 2020
    6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • March 19, 2020
    6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • April 23, 2020
    6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • May 21, 2020
    6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


2008-2010 Delancey Place, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19103, United States



Fanny Price, the heroine of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park, may not have the dazzling Lizzie Bennet wit, or charming Emma Woodhouse schemes, but she remains one of the most compelling of Austen’s female characters. Fanny is a young vulnerable woman, raised in a working-class seaside town, brought to her relations in a dazzlingly wealthy estate home, where she must navigate an intimidating societal environment. As 2020 is the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in the United States, we’ll look at Fanny Price through the lens of women’s rights in the early 19th Century.  Austen was acutely aware of the position women held in her society and, in a way, her books are about how women dealt with scenarios in which they had little rights and even less control over their conditions.  We’ll highlight our reading of Mansfield Park with some contemporary critical essays and women’s rights works from Austen’s lifetime.



Mansfield Park syllabus


About the Instructors

Paul Savidge is on the board of directors (and former Regional Coordinator) for the Jane Austen Society of North America, Eastern PA Region.

Edward G. Pettit is the Sunstein Manager of Public Programs at The Rosenbach where he has taught courses on Austen (Northanger Abbey, Emma), Mary Shelley, Charles Dickens, and many other authors and topics including Edgar Allan Poe, vampire literature, mystery and suspense fiction.  When not attending Moby-Dick Marathon Readings, he can usually be found at literary-themed cocktail parties.


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