Austen Exception to the Rule?
In new research, Cornell University psychologists found that study participants were more than twice as likely on average to call male professionals – even fictional ones – by their last name only, compared to equivalent female professionals. This example of gender bias, the researchers said, may be contributing to gender inequality.
The Jane Austen News' collection of writers
The eight studies, which included male and female participants, showed the difference which came from the first name distinction. When men were referred to by only their surname that were perceived as more famous and more important than the women who were referred to by their first and last names. Researchers say that the implications for political campaigns could be important as "it's possible that referring to a candidate by their full name instead of just their surname could have implications for fame and eminence." It's true that we usually say "Shakespeare" but "Virginia Woolf", and "Hardy" but "Mary Shelley", however, we like to think that Austen might be the exception to the two-name rule. Jane Austen is certainly the only really famous Austen who we think of when we hear the name Austen!

Austen In The NeRD
We didn't know this until very recently, but apparently normal e-readers such as Kindles are banned on board US navy submarines because of various security and technology issues. However, since there's not a lot of space on board subs for physical books, the US navy have come up with NeRDs - or the Navy e-Reader Device to give it its full name. Each NeRD costs about £2,300 and regularly has a five-person waitlist. Although highly popular and varied in content (the featured list includes modern fiction, history, science fiction, classics and professional development), the NeRDs don't hold every book. How could they?
But at the Jane Austen News we were very pleased to see that included on the list of books featured are a selection of Jane Austen's novels! Also on the list: Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
The Odyssey by Homer
The Stand by Stephen King
Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
A Game of Thrones by George RR Martin
1776 by David McCullough
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lack by Rebecca Skloot
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
The King James Bible
The Qu'ran (Koran)
The Book of Mormon
Various works by Shakespeare, James Joyce, Walt Whitman and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Each NeRD can hold around 300 books, but Austen is naturally a must no matter how short the book list!
Little Miss Austen Author Comes To Visit
We recently had Caroline Knight, Jane Austen's fifth great-niece visit the Jane Austen Centre in Bath. Another unexpected treat came when Jennifer Adams, the author of the Little Miss Austen books, came to see us at the Centre. She was delighted to find that her books were for sale in the Centre's giftshop, and kindly agreed to sign some! Here are a few pictures from her visit:  
We're afraid the signed copies have already gone, but if you know a small person who'd like a Little Miss Austen book then you can find them for sale in our  gift shop.
An Austen Festival World Record Attempt
Port Alberni (in British Columbia, Canada) hosted their annual Jane Austen Festival last weekend (July 6th, 7th and 8th), and as part of the festival, organisers arranged a world record attempt. Participants gathered in the ADSS Theatre at Alberni District Secondary School on Saturday July 7th to try to break the Guinness Book of Records record for the most people gathered in one place dressed in Regency costume. This was the third year in a row that Port Alberni's Jane Austen Festival had tried for the record, which was set in 2014 in Bath with 550 costumed participants. Despite not breaking the record this time (the final Guinness Book of Records count was 349) oranisers and those taking part were still in high spirits and had an amazing festival. Port Alberni Mayor Mike Ruttan summed up the feeling of the crowd:
At the end of the day, the count is immaterial. What’s important is we came together.

A Present For A Prince
Our final piece of Jane Austen News this week is more a piece about a love of classics in general. Prince Harry bought his newest nephew, Prince Louis, a charming present for his christening, which took place a few days ago on Monday 9th July. Prince Harry decided to track down a first edition of A.A. Milne's classic Winnie-The-Pooh, and spent around £8,000 on the first edition. He hopes to build up a library of first editions for Louis, Charlotte and George to enjoy as they get older. What a wonderful idea! Books are always a great gift, and there's just something special about first editions. (Mind you, if he should like to buy a first edition of Pride and Prejudice for the library, he'll be looking at a bit of a higher price. The guide price for first editions of Pride and Prejudice sit at around £65,000!)