CFP: Jane Austen and the Making of Regency Whiteness

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By Francesca Killoran

Editors: Kerry Sinanan , University of Texas at San Antonio and Mariam Wassif, Carnegie Mellon University.

For review with SUNY Press, Long Nineteenth Century Series

Jane Austen and the Making of Regency Whiteness unsettles Austen criticism to re-examine her novels’ centrality to forging whiteness in the eighteenth century. This “whiteness project” (Gerald Horne) is reproduced by Austen cultures, afterlives, and adaptations, with global ramifications. This volume gathers essays from scholars working at the intersections of Critical Race and Black Studies, Indigenous methodologies, and Postcolonial theory, to argue that Austen’s novels are fundamentally about making white, Anglo subjects of empire who are located in a specific historical period. The Regency whiteness produced in the novels continues to have a huge impact and desirability as Austen is exported, reproduced, and consumed globally. The volume will show that it is specifically the making of Regency white people that has granted Austen her global, iconic status today.

While Edward Said and more recent postcolonial critics have long argued that Austen and empire are interwoven, what has not yet been fully discussed is the powerful race-making work that Austen’s novels perform and …read more