Saturday 4th December 2021

Venue: Online

7-8.30pm GMT

Inaugural Deirdre Le Faye Memorial Lecture

Dr Gillian Dow, University of Southampton

“Interesting fragments have continued to appear”: The Unfinished Business of Writing Women’s Lives

In 1995, writing the Preface to her third edition of Jane Austen’s Letters, Deirdre Le Faye admits that ‘a very considerable hoard’ of letters by Austen will never come to light. Le Faye’s optimism that ‘interesting fragments’ will enhance our understanding of the daily business of Austen’s life is, nevertheless, compelling. In this online talk, Gillian Dow will focus on a near-contemporary of Austen’s, Louise Swanton-Belloc (1796-1881), and think about the work of biography. Friend to Maria Edgeworth, and the translator of Elizabeth Gaskell and Harriet Beecher Stowe, among others, Louise Swanton-Belloc created networks of professional women writers across Europe and North America. Join us to look at some ‘interesting fragments’ of a literary life.

Gillian Dow is an Associate Professor in the English Department at the University of Southampton and was Executive Director of Chawton House from 2014-2019.  She has published widely on Jane Austen and her contemporaries and has a special interest in pan-European women writers and translation.

Tickets £6

Additional Information

This is an online event. Ticket holders will be emailed links on the day of the event. The lecture, pre-recorded to ensure quality, will premier on YouTube at 7pm but will be available to watch for those with the link afterwards.

If you do not receive joining details by midday (UK time) on the day of the event, please email with your order number.

Access requirements:

Access to working internet is required. Please note the Zoom Q&A is live and not pre-recorded. All times are UK GMT