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  • Writer's pictureDeborah Yaffe

Still talking

It’s never a bad time to talk about Persuasion–really, what are you doing that’s more important?--but right now may be an especially good time to discuss Jane Austen’s last completed novel. See, a new screen adaptation just premiered on Netflix! Maybe you haven’t heard?

Assuming you’re not exhausted from all those conversations you’ve been having about whether the new adaptation is a fresh, modern take on Austen’s deathless masterpiece or a travesty that should be buried with a stake through its heart, this weekend offers an opportunity for yet more Persuasion conversation.

Open to Persuasion,” an online mini-conference about the novel, will run from 4 to 7 pm (US Eastern) on Saturday and 10 to 11 am (US Eastern) on Sunday, but recordings of all four hour-long sessions will be emailed to those who make a donation of any size.

The conference is the last of three summer fundraisers (read about the others here and here) for an upcoming workshop production of Sarah Rose Kearns’ theatrical adaptation of Persuasion, which premiered off-Broadway last fall. (In a recent email update, Kearns reported that 150 donors have already contributed more than $16,000 towards the production’s $20,000 budget.)

Despite its modest size, the weekend conference features a distinguished range of participants, among them academics, journalists, and fanfiction writers, who will discuss such topics as Austen’s techniques of characterization and the challenges of adapting the novel to different mediums.

Seems likely that someone may mention that Netflix movie – just in case you haven’t heard about it.


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