203 years ago yesterday, Jane Austen took her last breath.
No one in her time could have predicted that two centuries later, she would be celebrated as a groundbreaking author, an early feminist and an astute observer of humanity.
On the surface, her books follow the predictable path to marriage. But a deeper dive reveals how smart Austen was. Her books are about politics, the foibles of being human, and complications that come with being with others. Her characters (for the most part) are not Lords and Ladies, Generals or Kings/Queens. Her stories are not about war or the adventures of one who is far from home. They are about ordinary people, living ordinary lives.
That I believe, is the reason why she continues to speak to readers. In writing about John and Jane Doe’s of the world, her characters and narratives become timeless and universal.
Wherever she is, I hope she knows how much she is adored and respected.