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Jane Austen News - Issue 156

What's the Jane Austen News this week?


Would Mr Darcy's Wet Shirt Be As Good Today?
In an article published this week for BBC Culture, Emma Jones explored the new wave of TV shows which are featuring nudity and sex, and whether they mean that modern viewers are becoming "less prudish". Jane Austen news 7She looked at some of the most memorable moments from the past few years of TV, and noted that there was a trend. In 2016 the viewers of radiotimes.com voted Aidan Turner, playing historical hero Poldark, stripping off and taking a bath, as TV’s most memorable moment that year. Also in 2016, the spy series The Night Manager caused a stir when a graphic sex scene showing Tom Hiddleston’s naked backside. Then in 2018, The Bodyguard series, which included explicit sex scenes and nudity had viewing figures which peaked at 11 million in the UK!
There are more TV programmes released each week than anyone can realistically watch and so naturally you need to get people talking about your show over others.

Natalie Jamieson, popular culture journalist

This got those of us at the Jane Austen News wondering, as the acceptable levels of nudity have seemingly been raised by the industry to include full nudity in a greater number of productions, would the scene from the BBC's 1995 production of Pride and Prejudice, where Mr Darcy dives into the lake at Pemberley and emerges in a figure-hugging wet shirt, have become such a hit with audiences had it been first broadcast in this day and age?

If more nudity (both for men and women) is what directors are using to get a series noticed, what will that mean for the world of Jane Austen adaptations? Will the upcoming 2020 production of Pride and Prejudice feature Darcy in the buff? And, if it does, what will Austen fans think? Too much? Should Austen always be PG? Or will it be a welcome sight?

Emma Jones' full article can be found here.

Jane Austen: Fitness Guru

Author Bryan Kozlowski will shortly be publishing his book, The Jane Austen Diet: Austen's Secrets to Food, Health, and Incandescent Happiness, which, as strange as it may sound, promotes Jane Austen as a wellness guru.

Kozlowski was reading way through all six of Jane’s novels, while at the same time beginning a “personal wellness project” to become healthier and happier as he entered his thirties. What surprised him was that he kept finding parallels between the latest evidence-based research on health, diet, and exercise, and the wellness beliefs Austen seemed to have written into her novels. These included things like Jane Fairfax's belief that a “simple walk before breakfast does me good”. Kozlowski found that he felt more energised throughout the day and slept better at night once he started a morning walking routine.

Stringently eating or exercising your way to a certain corset size is never the road to wellness in Austenworld. Rather, this is the place where ‘health and happiness’ are exquisitely interconnected.

Bryan Kozlowski

We're pretty sure that Jane would never have imagined herself being praised as a fitness guru, so we'll certainly be intrigued to find out what other principles Kozlowski has found within Jane's novels and how they helped him on his road to happiness and wellness. The book is due out on March the 19th.


Jane Austen in Calgary

If you live in Canada (and are unable to make it to our own Jane Austen Festival in September!) you might like to know about the upcoming Jane Austen Ball which will be taking place on June the 1st in Calgary. The Calgary Pride and Prejudice Summer Ball will take place at the Alberta Ballroom in the Fairmont Palliser, and there will also be optional dance classes which can be attended in the run-up to the day. There two tickets options for the event are either: attend the dinner and dance for around $212, or attend just the dance for $134 (Canadian dollars). The dance classes leading up to the day are around $25 each. For any Canadians who are interested, more information can be found here.

Free Books for World Book Day Tomorrow (Thursday March 7th) is World Book Day in the UK - although for the rest of the world it is on April 23rd - and to celebrate the National Literary Trust and the Morrisons Foundation will donate more than 7,300 brand new books to primary schools across the UK. Each Morrisons store in the UK will donate a bundle of 15 new books published by Penguin Random House to a local primary school this week.
We are thrilled to be working with Morrisons to bring the gift of reading to 125,000 children across the UK by getting brand new books into primary schools. School budgets are stretched, many school libraries are struggling and 1 in 8 disadvantaged children don’t have a single book of their own at home; so it has never been more important to get books into the schools that need them most. When children discover a love of reading, they do better at school and later in life, so we must do everything we can to inspire children to fall in love with reading for a lifetime.

Jonathan Douglas - National Literary Trust director

We think this is a fantastic initiative! We hope to have news of some of the events which take place for World Book Day in our Austen News next week.

Jane Austen Day with Charlotte Jane Austen News is our weekly compilation of stories about or related to Austen. Here we will feature a variety of items, including craft tutorials, reviews, news stories, articles and photos from around the world. If you’d like to include your story, please contact us with a press release or summary, along with a link. You can also submit unique articles for publication in our Online Magazine. Don’t miss our latest news – become a Jane Austen Member and receive a digest of stories, articles and Jane Austen news every week. You will also be able to access our online Magazine with over 1000 articles, test your knowledge with our weekly quiz and get offers on our Online Giftshop. Plus new members get an exclusive 10% off voucher to use in the Online Giftshop

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