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You recently wrote an essay about “Austenolatry.” Will Jane Austen mania ever die out or is it here to stay?
I don’t know if there will even be books in the future — things are changing so fast. But there’s something compelling about Jane Austen’s understanding of families: the combination of domestic life and the sense of urgency about money and financial issues and the commerce of marriage. I think people experience that in different ways in different times but there’s something that perseveres. This particular wave of Austenolatry is huge and very energetic. Like any wave it will calm down a bit, and some other literary fad will emerge.
But, do I think Jane Austen will disappear into recesses of forgotten literature? Until this type of novel disappears, I don’t think she will either. She invented it; she perfected it.