Category: The Eighteenth Century in Popular Culture

The eighteenth century provides unlimited fodder for twenty-first century entertainment. From films like The Duchess (2008) and Marie Antoinette (2006) to stage plays like Or, (2009) and historical fiction like Year of Wonders (2002), the ways that eighteenth-century women navigated their world resonate with our own cultural concerns. In The Eighteenth Century in Popular Culture we explore how and why the eighteenth-century continues to entertain while illuminating today’s politics of gender, sexuality, race, class, privilege, geography, culture, and the arts.

Sitting with Jane and Her Forgotten Peers

Front of Bench - Image 1

In the summer of 2017, a handful of towns in England celebrated the bicentenary of Jane Austen’s death by hosting a project called Sitting with Jane.[1] Sitting with Jane is an art trail featuring twenty-four Austen-themed book-shaped benches in public spaces. While most of the benches are located in the Basingstoke area—the project’s home base—a…



Are you participating in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)? Writing about the 18th century? Share your work with us! We’d like to feature 18th-century-themed original fiction for the month of November. Submit a synopsis of your work and a 750-1000 word excerpt to Your novel could be featured in a special NaNoWriMo post.

Unbecoming Jane Austen: Review of Austen’s Pride: A New Musical of Pride and Prejudice, Directed by Igor Goldin

Lindsie VanWinkle as Jane Austen (photo credit: Ron Heerkens Jr./

Location: Finger Lakes Musical Theatre Festival, Nazareth College Arts Center, Rochester, NY Event Date: July 13 – July 24, 2016 Review Date: July 21 and July 22, 2016 To the possible surprise of many readers, dramatic adaptations of Jane Austen’s novels have a long history, dating back to the 1890s and proliferating throughout the twentieth-century.…

Behn’s Badass Bibliotheque: His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik Q&A


Welcome to our first Behn’s Badass Bibliotheque summer book group post! Alaina Pincus, general editor of ABO Public, and Shea Stuart, 18th Century and Pop Culture section editor, discuss His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik, which is the first book in her Temeraire series. The novel is a fantasy set during the Napoleonic Wars in which…

Outlander, Season 2: Review of Episodes 12 and 13

In honor of the supersize Outlander finale, it’s a supersize review for ABOPublic. I’ll try to move briskly but we have a lot of ground (and time) to cover. While watching the final two episodes, “The Hail Mary” and “Dragonfly in Amber,” I was actually reminded of Episode 5 “Untimely Resurrection,” where Jack Randall marvels…

Gossip & Garrulity, Privacy & Privation: Review of Sense & Sensibility, Directed by Eric Tucker

Location: Bedlam/The Gym at Judson, New York, NY Event Date: January 17-April 17, 2016 (extended again from June 17-Oct 2) Review Date: March 6, 2016 In the Bedlam production of Sense & Sensibility, everything is constantly in motion—actors, set pieces, and props—with bodies, tables and chairs, windowed trellises, and even the costumes themselves on occasion…

Summer Reading Group Discussion — His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik


Have you read or are you reading His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik? (Of course you are. Because British naval officers and the Napoleonic Wars and DRAGONS.) Contribute to our summer reading group! Go to our Goodreads group page and post your thoughts on the discussion board. At the end of the month, your comments…