Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sunday’s Guest: Audrey Bilger

Hello all, & happy to announce a special guest blogger for tomorrow: dear pal & stauch Robert Frost’s Banjo supporter Audrey Bilger will be taking a look at literary bad boys—specifically Mr Heathcliff & Mr Rochester, the creations of Emily & Charlotte Brontë in their novels Wuthering Heights & Jane Eyre.

Audrey poses the musical question: “What is it about men like Heathcliff and Rochester that makes some women—and maybe some guys, too—think they’re romantic heroes?” In a rollicking look at these two characters, Ms Bilger manages to take their reputations as romantic leading men down a large number of pegs & suggests, I believe, that the cultural impetus to transform both of these novels into tales of great romantic love runs almost completely contrary to the story each book actually tells.

This is Audrey’s second contribution to Robert Frost’s Banjo—her first was an interview with pop star Lesley Gore ("Lesley Gore: Out Here On Her Own"). Audrey also took part in formulating the interviews for the Musical Questions series.

Audrey Bilger is a professor of lit & gender studies at Claremont-McKenna College, & also taught at Oberlin College after receiving her PhD from the University of Virginia—where Eberle & I had the good fortune to get to know her. Her publications (in addition to Robert Frost’s Banjo, of course!) include Laughing Feminism: Subversive Comedy in Frances Burney, Maria Edgeworth, and Jane Austen (Wayne State University Press, 1998), as well as articles in various Women's Studies journals & The Paris Review; numerous review articles; & interviews with writers and musicians for Bitch: Feminist Response To Popular Culture & ROCKRGRL. She lives with her spouse, Cheryl, & when not teaching she keeps herself busy with a lot of writing projects, & she’s also done time as a drummer in a blues band! Thanks Audrey, for sending us the fantastic article, & dear readers, please check it out tomorrow.

In other news: Sorry I’m not keeping up as well as I’d like either with comments or reading over the past while; still having somewhat sporadic computer access. This may continue for some time, but I’m trying to keep up regular posts & I’ve certainly appreciated everyone’s ongoing support.

Don’t forget: Audrey Bilger takes on Heathcliff & Rochester, tomorrow a.m.
—Guess who wins!


  1. Wooo hooo, can't wait!!! This should be a fun post and I'll be interested to see Ms. Bilger's point of view. Very much looking forward to it. Thanks John! Enjoy your weekend!

  2. Hi Lizzy-- You won't be disappointed. Hope you have a fine weekend, too!

  3. Happy Easter John and family, I need to catch up on your blog, I can't believe how prolific you are and yet maintain the quality of the posts which are all interesting.I think your Dad's photos are great too.

  4. Thanks a lot TFE, & Happy Easter to you as well; & especially thanks about Dad's photos.


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