In Austen-L, Ellen Moody, who was the first Austen scholar to develop calendars for each of Jane Austen's novels......
....but who, ironically, believes my shadow story theory is totally bogus, just wrote the following about the subtle depiction of the passing of time in Jane Austen's novels: "What distinguishes Austen's [novels] and makes them unusual is
this adherence to hour by hour, day by day. You can really move hour by
hour in Austen's novels. The frequency of the keeping of time plus the
consistency is highly unusual."
I responded as follows.
Yes, it is highly unusual, and it only strengthens my claim that all her
novels have shadow stories. What a great way to provide subliminal hints
to readers as to offstage action, by providing, in effect, a whole class
of clues as to the whereabouts, at a given time, of certain characters.
Exactly as in a crime detection story, the detectives have to know who
was where at what time, in order to provide alibis for certain suspects,
and to dictate further scrutiny for others. Without dates and times,
they'd be lost. Same with the literary sleuth trying to decode JA's
I will be giving several specific examples of this in my book, but here
is a link to my blog posts about one of them. I showed that Jane Austen
must have immensely enjoyed an ongoing joke in which various of her
female characters, including a few heroines, dream about future husbands
on the Eve of St. Agnes!:
@JaneAustenCode on Twitter
Collecting Jane Austen: Regency London
2 months ago