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Jane on the Brain


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About the Author

Wendy Jones is a practicing psychotherapist and former English professor known for her work on the connection between literature and the mind-brain sciences. Jones received her Ph.D. in English Literature from Cornell University and subsequently was Senior Lecturer and a Fellow at the Society for the Humanities at Cornell and she has been a Visiting Professor at Williams College, University of Rochester, and Syracuse University. She lives in Ithaca, New York.


"A fascinating mash-up of literary analysis and neuroscience. Highly recommended for Austenites and pop-psychology fans, as both will find plenty of original, acute concepts to pore over." -- Booklist
"Recommended for Janeites and general readers interested in social intelligence-one needn't be a huge Austen fan to enjoy this odd combo. Particularly recommended for those who would delight in using the DSM-5 to diagnose Persuasion's Sir Walter Elliot with narcissistic personality disorder." -- Library Journal
"A psychotherapist and an English professor, Jones wears both hats simultaneously to describe why Jane Austen's novels appeal to the human brain, which craves sociability." -- New York Times Book Review (New & Noteworthy)
"Brilliantly original and insightful, this fusion of psychology, neuroscience, and literature provides a heightened understanding of one of our most beloved cultural institutions-and our own minds." -- Paste (Best Books of December)
"Being a Jane Austen fanatic isn't required for appreciating this fascinating book; Jones, a psychotherapist and former English professor, will win over the initially unconverted by the book's end. Readers will find this book well worth the generous investment of time required and finish it better informed about both the science behind human behavior and the artistry behind Austen's work." -- Publishers Weekly
"Jones has created an absorbing study of the ways our most beloved characters teach us about human interactions and social settings. An accessible introduction to the science of mind and the history of behavioral psychology, written in a warm, engaging, personal style." -- Historical Novels Review
"Drawing on psychology and neuroscience, Jones shows that Austen's works were ahead of their time in terms of how they portrayed social relationships. In other words, it offers a scientific explanation for why we're so obsessed with Emma, Elizabeth, and Anne." -- Real Simple

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