2007 Annual General Meeting, Oct. 5-7, Vancouver, BC Canada

Theme: "Discovering Emma in Vancouver"

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Dr. Jean Barman
British Columbia at the Time of Jane Austen


On Thursday night the AGM attendees will be treated to a lecture by Dr. Jean Barman, emerita professor in the Department of Educational Studies of the University of British Columbia, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. Professor Barman has written and edited numerous books about British Columbia and its Pacific coast communities. Many of her books have won awards. Among them are The West Beyond The West: A History of British Columbia (1996), and The Remarkable Adventures of Portuguese Joe Silvey (2004), a bestseller.  Her most recent book is Stanley Park's Secret (2005) which won the 2006 City of Vancouver Book Award as best contributing to "an understanding of Vancouver's history, its unique character & the achievements of its residents." The book begins in the time of Jane Austen.

It was only during Jane Austen's time, in the late 18th century, that the future British Columbia began to be known in England. Jean's talk introduces that British Columbia. Because she had two sailor brothers, Jane Austen likely kept close watch over Britain's maritime feats. She may have been aware of the adventures of Captain Cook, and possibly of those of Captain George Vancouver, who was dispatched to this part of the world in the early 1790s. Jean's talk, "British Columbia at the Time of Jane Austen," includes images possibly making their way into the Austen household. The legacy of British Columbia in Jane Austen's time is all around us, from the coast's subsequent history to the many place names such as Vancouver itself, Georgia Strait, and Queen Charlotte Islands. As well, the AGM attendees will find names such as Galiano, Saturna, Gabriola and Cortes used for the conference rooms at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. This lecture is designed to put you in perspective at the outset of our AGM so that you will enjoy the entire Vancouver AGM even more.

Photo by Martin Dee

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