Anatomy of a Janeite

Anatomy of a Janeite
Do You Fit the Bill?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2008, JASNA put together a survey of the “typical” Janeite. I was wondering how many items match with my viewers/readers.

Part 1: Participant Demographics. The first half of the survey focused on the survey participant. What portrait emerges from these responses?

• Gender: 96% Female; 4 % Male
• Age: 33% age 1-29; 35% age 30-49; 32% age 50+ (with a median age of 40) There were 335 teenagers and 215 respondents aged 70 or over.
• Nationality: 90% from English-speaking countries
• 67% U.S.; 6% Canada; 16% U.K, Australia, New Zealand & Ireland (combined)
• Occupation: 75% of Janeites are typically working women/men. The top ten career fields are education, business administration (manager/HR/secretary, etc.), business services/worker/retail, library/archivist, finance, science/engineering, writing/publishing, medical, arts, law and IT. (More than one-third are been teachers or librarians.)
• Education: 81% over the age of 20 have a 4-year (or higher) college degree; almost half have achieved a master’s (33%) or a doctorate (12%). Surprisingly, 71% did not major in English/Literature.
Religious: 41% said they were religious; 38% not religious.
• Politics: Janeites are more likely to view themselves as liberal (55%) than conservative (25%), and on the topic of feminism, to have a favorable (67%) rather than unfavorable (11%) opinion.
• Hobbies: More than 50% involved in reading (98%); watching movies (80%); listening to music (72%); attending theater/concerts (61%); walking/yoga/other exercise (60%); visiting museums (60%); and traveling (56% to other countries; 54% within own country).
• Traveling: 47% of all respondents have visited Austen sites in England, including 40% of U.S. respondents and 53% of Canadians. More than half the respondents have visited Western Europe (69%), England/Wales/Scotland (68%) or traveled extensively in the U.S. (65%) and Canada (52%). Many have also been to Mexico and the Caribbean. The least-visited area from the survey list was India (4%), followed by Russia (7%), and China (8%).
• Favorite Afternoon Drink: 63% tea; 46 % coffee
Pets: tabbies rule – 58% of respondents have pets, with cats at 36% and dogs at 30%
Reading: 86% read at least 2 books per month; 33% read five or more per month
Preferred Genre (non-Austen, of course): 29% mystery; 15% historical fiction
Favorite Authors (not Jane Austen): Charles Dickens, Charlotte Brontë, Mrs. Gaskell, J.K. Rowling, J.R.R. Tolkien, William Shakespeare, Anthony Trollope, Georgette Heyer, and Agatha Christie.
• Tech Savvy: 57% described themselves as tech smart; 1% as clueless

Part 2: Janeite Land. The second half of the survey looked into the participant’s relationship to Jane Austen and her work.

• Age When You Discovered Jane Austen: over 50% before age 17; 13% younger than age 12
• How Often Do You Read Austen Novels? 33% read 3+ per year; 11% read all six every year
Favorite Austen Book: 53% Pride and Prejudice; 28 % Persuasion; 7% Emma; 5% Sense and Sensibility; 4% Mansfield Park; 4% Northanger Abbey.
• Favorite Heroine: 58% Elizabeth Bennet; 24% Anne Elliot; 7% Elinor Dashwood; 5% Emma Woodhouse; 3% Fanny Price; 2% Catherine Moreland; 1% Marianne Dashwood
Favorite Hero: 51% Fitzwilliam Darcy; 17% Frederick Wentworth; 14% Mr. Knightley; 10% Henry Tilney; 5% Colonel Brandon; 1% Edward Ferrars; 1% Edmund Bertram [Interestingly, males are a good bit less likely to choose Darcy as their favorite hero. The least-liked hero by some measure is Edmund Bertram (40%).]
• Favorite Bad Boy: 33% Wickham; 28% Willoughby; 16% Henry Crawford; 10% Frank Churchill; 7% William Elliot; 6% General Tilney
• Worst Parents: 54% Sir Walter Elliot; 16% Mr. & Mrs. Price; 15% Sir Thomas and Lady Bertram
• Four Comic Characters Who Delight Us: 74% Mrs. Bennet; 70% Mr. Collins; 56% Admiral Croft; 50% Mrs. Bates

For the complete results and analysis, please go to JASNA Persuasion On-Line sources. http://www.jasna.org/persuasions/on-line/vol29no1/kiefer.html

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About reginajeffers

Regina Jeffers is the award-winning author of Austenesque, Regency and contemporary novels.
This entry was posted in Austen Authors, England, film adaptations, Georgian England, historical fiction, history, Jane Austen, Living in the Regency, Persuasion, Pop Culture, Pride and Prejudice, reading habits and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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