Jane Austen will make her debut on the £10 note today and the quote that accompanies her image is causing some controversy. The line in question is "I declare after all that there is no enjoyment like reading!" which superficially sounds quite positive. The problem, however, is that it's spoken by a woman who is only interested in reading to ensnare Mr Darcy.
This isn't the first time the inclusion of Jane Austen has caused controversy, previously campaigners like Caroline Criado-Perez were sent death and rape threats on social media for daring to ask for a positive female role model to be included on the nation's currency. A nation, we should point out, that is made up of more than 50% women.
Criado-Perez gathered 35,000 signatures when the Bank of England announced that it would replace Elizabeth Fry on the £5 note with Winston Churchill, meaning women were totally unrepresented. Many claimed, of course, that the Queen is a woman, which gloriously misses the point of including people who have achieved things off their own back, rather than inheriting a nation to rule.
So this seemingly thoughtless quote isn't helping the Bank of England's case. There must, presumably, be a far better quote from Austen knocking about that would have made for good banknote fodder, but presumably, everyone had a quick look on Google then went for a nice long lunch after patting themselves on the back for being jolly inclusive.
Having done a quick Google to check, Giz reckons the Bank should have gone with "The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid". [via MSN]