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'3 or 4 Families in a Country Village is the very thing to work on'
Jane Austen's advice, in September 1814, to a niece with literary ambitions, undoubtedly reflected her satisfaction with her own work in progress, a novel in which the village of Highbury provides the setting for the moral and emotional education of Emma Woodhouse, a heroine 'handsome, clever, and rich' but spoiled by 'the power of having rather too much of her own way, and a disposition to think a little too well of herself'. Emma 1816 was the last novel which Jane Austen lived to see through the press, and is perhaps her most perfect and representative work, happily combining the qualities for which she has been most admired: irony, wit, and realism, vivid characterization, moral seriousness, and faultless control of tone and narrative method.
The text is edited by James Kinsley from R.W. Chapman's Oxford edition, with an introduction and notes by David Lodge, and a new bibliography by Margaret Anne Doody.
|Publisher||Oxford University Press|