JASNA Members Discuss Austen on
The Jane Austen Book Club DVD

On February 5, 2008, Sony Pictures released The Jane Austen Book Club on DVD in both standard definition format and the higher definition Blu-ray(™) format.  One of the extras on the DVD is an interview with JASNA members and director/screenwriter Robin Swicord.  Sony Pictures has provided a clip from this interview to JASNA.

Harris Bigg-Wither
Portrait of Harris Bigg-Wither (1781-1833)
from www.bigg-wither.com

In 1802 Austen received a proposal of marriage from a wealthy man she had known for many years, Harris Bigg-Wither, the brother of close friends.  After accepting Bigg-Wither’s proposal, she repented overnight and turned him down the next day.  There are no surviving letters or other text to explain Austen’s change of heart.

Joan Ray (JASNA past President), Claire Bellanti (Regional Coordinator, JASNA-Southwest), and director Robin Swicord discuss this brief engagement and comment on possible motives for Austen’s action.

Click here to watch this portion of the video interview with Joan Ray, Claire Bellanti, and Robin Swicord.