Some of Our
Favorite Links

JASNA Massachusetts Facebook Page

Jane Austen Society of North America

The Republic of Pemberley

Jane Austen Centre, Bath, England

Austen In Boston: A Jane Austen Book Club

Articles by local JASNA members:

How I Came to See Fanny Price's Light

The Privilege of My Own Profession: The Living Legacy of Austen in the Classroom

Inherited and Living Variables: The Choices of Sisters and Brothers in Mansfield Park

Click here to review the meetings that were held during:

The Harriet Avery Fund and past speakers

Bylaws (PDF)

Upcoming JASNA Annual General Meetings


JASNA Massachusetts Region email

Regional Co-Coordinators: Jill Crowley and Carolyn Jack
Webmaster: Carolyn Jack
Treasurer: Angela Jack
Secretary: Julie DeWitt
Members of the Steering Committee: Marcia Folsom, Elizabeth Philipps, Isa Schaff, Rita Watts, Amy Wertheim, Nancy Yee


If you really love Jane Austen, consider joining JASNA (The Jane Austen Society of North America). We welcome all who enjoy Jane Austen's works. The JASNA Massachusetts Region includes all JASNA members who are residents of Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. We have many Austen scholars among our membership as well as those who simply enjoy reading Austen and sharing their pleasure with others.

We hold five events during our membership year: four regular meetings (September, November, March and May), plus a celebration of Jane Austen's birthday in December. These events usually consist of a talk or lecture lasting about an hour, followed by discussion and light refreshments. We'd be very pleased to have you join us at our next meeting.

Meeting fee is $5 JASNA members, $10 non-members. Non-members may attend up to five events before joining JASNA.

2019 - 2020 Season

All metings this season will be held at the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation in Waltham, MA. Click here for driving directions and parking information.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Deidre Shauna Lynch

Stranded in the Present in Persuasion

Jane Austen invokes public history in Persuasion more explicitly than in any of her other works. She lodges the story of Anne Elliot's achievement of happiness in the interstices of war, carefully dating events so as to indicate that this story unfolds in that strange interlude of false peace that occurred between Napoleon's abdication and his escape from Elba. This talk will consider that dating and what it tells us about Austen's relationship at the end of her career to the historicism and historical fiction of the early nineteenth century. In Persuasion Austen refashions her usual marriage plot to make it accommodate reflections on time, bad timing, and women's experience of historical change.

Deidre Shauna Lynch was educated at the University of British Columbia in Canada and at Stanford University, where she took her Ph.D. Formerly Chancellor Jackman Professor in the Department of English at the University of Toronto, she joined the faculty of Harvard University in 2014; she is now Ernest Bernbaum Professor of English Literature at Harvard.

She has published widely on the literature and culture of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain, the history of women's writing, the theory and history of the novel, and the history of books and reading. The Economy of Character: Novels, Market Culture and the Business of Inner Meaning won the Modern Language Association Prize for a First Book in 1999. Early 2015 saw the publication of her Loving Literature: A Cultural History, finalist in 2016 for the Phi Beta Kappa Christian Gauss Award for Literary Criticism and the Oscar Kenshur Prize in Eighteenth-Century Studies.

Lynch is also the editor of Cultural Institutions of the Novel, Janeites: Austen's Disciples and Devotees, the Oxford World's Classics edition of Austen's Persuasion, the Norton Critical Edition of Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, the Romantic Period volume of The Norton Anthology of English Literature, and an annotated edition of Austen's Mansfield Park for Harvard University Press. The Unfinished Book, co-edited with Alexandra Gillespie, is forthcoming from Oxford University Press in 2020.

Lynch was a 2007 Guggenheim Fellow and the Benjamin Duke Fellow at the National Humanities Center in 2000-2001.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

JASNA President Liz Philosophos Cooper

Jane Austen: Working Woman
I must keep to my own style & go on in my own Way.

Jane Austen was a working woman and determined professional writer. This illustrated talk will explore Austen's involvement in the business of publishing novels during a time of rampant financial instability. The Austen family were active participants in both war and finance and these two sectors intertwined in the story of Jane Austen's writing and publishing.

Liz Philosophos Cooper is the President of JASNA. Liz is a second-generation JASNA member who fell in love with Austen's work as a high school student. A member of JASNA since 1992, she has actively participated in local JASNA activities and served as JASNA's Vice-President for Regions from 2013-2018 and Regional Coordinator of Wisconsin prior to that. A popular speaker, she is a contributing writer to Jane Austen's Regency World and co-edits Wisconsin Region's A Year with Jane Austen calendar. Her talk from the Washington DC AGM, “The Apothecary and the Physician: Emma's Mr. Perry” was published in Persuasions 38.

She holds a BA (Communication Arts) from the University of Wisconsin. She worked in marketing before taking time off to raise four sons. Literature has always been a part of Liz's life, as her Mom was an English major. Liz began a Village book group in 1986 that is still going strong, and organized and implemented a Junior Great Books reading program at the local elementary school. She has been an active volunteer in the community, including serving as President of the Village of Shorewood Hills Foundation for many years. Liz and her husband Scott run a marketing consulting firm and enjoy traveling. True fact: they visited Chawton on their honeymoon in 1978! After having three brothers and four sons, it is a great joy for her to have three new daughters through marriage. Her three granddaughters and two grandsons are known to host tea parties with Jane Austen, showing that it's never too early to learn about Jane!

Talk funded in part by a grant from the Jane Austen Society of North America.

Photo credit:

Sunday, December 8, 2019

We celebrate Jane Austen's birthday!

Laura Rocklyn

Laura Rocklyn will present "Miss Austen at Home", along with perhaps a song or two and a few tips on etiquette in early 19th century England. Following her talk, we will enjoy an afternoon tea, with cakes, cookies, and other delights. Registration is required for this event.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Marsha McClintock Folsom

The Final Chapters of Austen's Persuasion

The good luck of a single surviving manuscript of an Austen novel, the cancelled final chapters of Persuasion, offers a glimpse of Austen transforming her own work. The brilliant revised ending engages the novel's central issues; including the difficulty of expressing emotion, the contrasting experiences of men and women, and the possibility of telepathic mind-reading.(!)

Marcia McClintock Folsom is a retired Professor of Literature at Wheelock College. She edited Approaches to Teaching Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Approaches to Teaching Austen's Emma; with John Wiltshire, Approaches to Teaching Mansfield Park (2014), and Approaches to Teaching Austen's Persuasion (forthcoming). Her most recent Persuasions essay is Emma: Knowing Her Mind (2016).

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Sheryl Craig

Sheryl Craig has been a faculty member in the English Department at the University of Central Missouri for more than twenty years. She is a popular speaker with both JASNA and JAS audiences, and is frequently published in Persuasions and Jane Austen Regency World Magazine. Sheryl served as JASNA Traveling Lecturer for 2011-12 and was Editor of the JASNA News. She is currently writing a book entitled Jane Austen and the Plight of Women.

Sheryl Craig is the Harriet Avery Fund speaker for the 2019-2020 season.

Site last updated on August 20, 2019
Copyright 2010-2019 Jane Austen Society of North America, Massachusetts Region
Contact the Webmaster