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Villans and Villany in Austen

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St. Andrew's on the Terrace

30 The Terrace

Wellington, Wellington 6011

New Zealand

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‘I am now going to murder my sister’: Villains and villainy in Austen

I hope the audience will help me by nominating their favourite villains in Austen (and those they hate the most). I will try to weave my talk around these nominations, and questions such as the following. Do ‘the graces, the spirit, the sagacity and the perseverance of the villain of the story outweigh all his absurdities and all his atrocities’ (Sanditon)? Are all her villains seducers who want money even more than they want sex? Are they all ‘black at heart, hollow and black!’ (Persuasion)? Is Austen fascinated by wickedness? Is Mr Knightley right that ‘Frank Churchill was a villain’? Why are villains so important in Austen?

David Norton FRSNZ
Emeritus Professor of English
Victoria University of Wellington

David is a crowd favourite and regularly at our meetings contributing to discussions. His talk in 2016 on hidden relationships in Emma had members begging to have him back. We've asked him to talk about the bad boys of Austen, during that discussion he also confessed to having once been a cowboy! He is currently writing a study of Austen’s writings Jane Austen, Laughter and Compassion.


After David's talk we'll have a break for afternoon tea (provided) then discuss ideas for 2019

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St. Andrew's on the Terrace

30 The Terrace

Wellington, Wellington 6011

New Zealand

View Map

Refund Policy

No Refunds

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