12 Things I Learned from Jane Austen

Huffpost Books brings us a delightful look at Bill Deresiewicz’s A Jane Austen Education: How Six Novels Taught Me about Love, Friendship, and Things That Really Matter. Mr. Deresiewicz says that from Persuasion, he learned
* That true friends tell a person when he mucks up his own life.
* Despite what “When Harry Met Sally” purports, men and women can be friends.

From Sense and Sensibility, he learned
* Committing oneself to another is not an automatic “death sentence.”
* Lust, not love, occurs at first sight.

From Mansfield Park, Deresiewicz offers
* The best gift one can give another is to listen to his “story.”
* Too much money brings misery, not happiness.

From Northanger Abbey comes this advice:
* Just because one thinks up an idea it does not make it so.
* Remain open to new possibilites.

From Emma, he says he learned
* Our opinions of ourselves are not a true gauge of our true worth.
* From gossip comes wisdom.

Finally, from Pride and Prejudice, the gentleman says he discovered that
* Just because one has an opinion, it does not make him correct.
* A bit of humiliation is good for the soul.

To read the full article and check out the scenes from Austen’s novels which accompany each life lesson, visit

About reginajeffers

Regina Jeffers is the award-winning author of Austenesque, Regency and contemporary novels.
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