Members Meeting - Nov 15 2014
What to do! What to do!
Where would you seat Lady Catherine de Bourgh and Mrs. Bennet if you were Mrs. Darcy hosting a dinner? What would you serve? And what on earth would you talk about? Eager participants at the latest Jane Austen Society Calgary gathering attempted to find the answers to these daunting questions. It was all lively discussion and exciting possibilities as the room buzzed with ideas. The results will be shared at our annual Jane Austen Tea in January aptly titled "Tea with Mr. Darcy". Many thanks to Carole for organizing our dinner debate.
Ann also enlightened with her talk on Employment and Education in Jane Austen's time. The topics are closely related and both employment and education were difficult for women to attain. King James I rejected the more open opportunities women had enjoyed under the reign of Elizabeth I. Census information does not include occupations for women, even though many women worked as domestic help, helped to run small businesses, and cared for children and homes. The only opportunity for upper-class women in paid work was in governess positions. There were approximately 25,000 women employed as governesses in 1821, yet there was no training available for the job until Queen's College opened in 1848. Ann also shared slides from her recent trip to England including stops in Milton Ernest, Bedfordshire, Worthing, Brighton and London in her speedy five-minute tour of England.