Since the 19th century, Jane Austen has been informally dubbed the female Shakespeare — and for good reason. She is considered a master of dialogue and development.
Films have been made of all her published works, and her narratives have been modernized in movies. Seth Grahame-Smith’s 2009 novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies peaked at No. 3 on The New York Times’ best-seller list. There is even a video game — Ever Jane — in which people role-play as Regency period socialites attending balls and navigating dinner parties.
“As long as she keeps being taught, she’s going to continue to have great acclaim and continued iconic status,”Devoney Looser, author of the 2017 book The Making of Jane Austen, says.
Austen completed six novels, only four of which were published during her lifetime. Her name did not originally appear on any of those four. In 1811, Sense and Sensibility came out, and she published it under “By a Lady.” Her next novel, Pride and Prejudice, came out in 1813 and was attributed to “the author of Sense and Sensibility.”
She also published Mansfield Park in 1814 and Emma in 1815 before her untimely death at the age of 41 due to either lymphoma or Addison’s disease. She never married nor had children but was very close with her seven siblings. In 1817, her brother Henry published Northanger Abbey and Persuasion together after her death.