I dressed up as a Jane Austen character for Halloween this year. As I was cleaning up after our party, I got a little too into the part and wished I had some servants to clean for me. Then I mentally flogged myself. If I lived in Jane Austen's time, I would most likely be a servant, and if I was anything like Jane Austen herself, I would also be dead by the time I reached my current age.
Later, while browsing through Facebook and reading my friends' grateful lists, I wondered what Jane Austen would find to be grateful for in our modern times. So, setting aside any concerns she might have about moral decay, here is Jane Austen's 2014 gratitude list:
- The financial freedom of women. Women are no longer dependent on men for their financial well-being.
- Dressing without the help of a ladies' maid.
- Online dating.
- Being able to drive a car.
- Not having to wear a corset.
- Modern medicine, which probably could have extended her life and the lives of others who died from disease or childbirth.
- Computers, word processing software, and keyboards
- Indoor plumbing and mechanized servants: heaters, hot water heaters, washing machines, dishwashers, mixers, crockpots, lawnmowers, light bulbs, etc.
- Public libraries.
- Public schools.
Looking at my life through Jane Austen's perspective helped me realize how rich I really am. What else do you think Jane Austen would find to be grateful for?