Alice Villaseñor

Alice Villaseñor oversees community-engaged learning at SUNY Buffalo State in her role as the Associate Director of Civic and Community Engagement. Previously, she was an Associate Professor of English at Medaille College in Buffalo, NY, where she was awarded the Brian R. Shero Teaching Excellence and Campus Leadership Award. She is happy to connect with fellow nineteenth-century scholars on Twitter and LinkedIn. An Austen scholar, she has published articles and book chapters on the Austen family, Austen’s fiction, Austen film adaptations, and Austen societies. She is currently working on a project about Victorian women’s responses to Austen’s work. She is active in the Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA) and currently serves on the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee. Previously, she was the 2006 JASNA International Visitor, a JASNA board member, a vice president for JASNA-SW, and a chair of the JASNA International Visitor Committee.

What is your favorite film set in the nineteenth century?
Because I have a favorite Austen film for every mood, it is hard to single out just one. The Muppet Christmas Carol is a never-to-be missed holiday tradition, so it is my most-watched film set in the nineteenth century.

If you could borrow any nineteenth-century painting from a museum for one year and hang it in your home, what would it be and why?
One of Vincent van Gough’s Sunflowers would brighten up my home during the long Buffalo winter and remind me of my colorful summer garden.

What historical figure would you love to see in twenty-first-century life?
I would love to overhear a contemporary conversation between Mrs. Proudie and the Rev. Obadiah Slope from The Chronicles of Barsetshire!

Which nineteenth-century fictional character do you wish were real?
I joined a D&D campaign that started at ASECS and moved online with the onset of the pandemic. Consequently, for a couple of years now, I have spent every other Saturday night playing Jane Fairfax. I would love to talk to her and find out if her backstory is as intriguing as I have imagined it to be. I would be especially interested in finding out her real thoughts about Frank Churchill.

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