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date: 21 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Jane Austen enjoyed going to the theatre whenever she had the opportunity, and she was knowledgeable about the styles, conventions, and performers of contemporary drama. Her interest in theatre and theatricality is reflected in the dramatic tropes of her novels, and in particular in the significant episode of the home theatricals in Mansfield Park: the interrupted rehearsals for Inchbald’s Lovers’ Vows. This chapter traces Austen’s experience of theatre, surveys the contemporary plays to which she familiarly refers, and describes the employment of a nuanced dramatic art in her novels.

Keywords: Austen, theatre, theatricals, Lovers’ Vows, contemporary plays.

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