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Jane Austen

Best known for her novels Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion, Mansfield Park, Emma and Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen was born in Steventon, England, on December 16, 1775, to well-educated parents who encouraged reading and writing. Austen’s witty, well-constructed stories about realistic middle-class characters challenged the limits of women writers. Although she called herself a ‘merely domestic’ novelist, she greatly influenced the development of the modern novel. Austen’s most famous works were published between 1811 and 1816, shortly before she died in July 1817. Later in the 19th century critics appreciated Austen’s writing more, and her novels remain popular today–for both literary critics and moviegoers, as they are widely read and adapted for the silver screen.