Anna Leonowens entry: Overview screen.
Writing and Life
Works By
Perhaps the most famous governess of all time, Anna Leonowens is better known as 'Anna' of The King and I than for her literary achievements. She was an enterprising and independent world traveller—arguably a Victorian example of a hybrid colonial subjectivity—whose fictionalised memoirs and stories based on her time in Siam received substantial attention in her lifetime. Admired in their time for their anti-slavery rhetoric, they have recently drawn attention to the complex relationship between European women and empire. A public speaker, Anna Leonowens also produced other travel writing, journalism, and art criticism.
6 November 1831 Anna Harriett Emma Edwards (later AL), educator and writer, was born in the East India Company barracks at Ahmednagar in India. Bibliographic Citation link.  scholarly note link.
April-August 1870 Part of AL's first book, a memoir of her sojourn in Siam, The English Governess at the Siamese Court, was serialized in Atlantic Monthly. Bibliographic Citation link.
1889 AL published her fourth and final book: Our Asiatic Cousins. Bibliographic Citation link.
19 January 1915 AL, educator and writer, died at 70 McTavish Street in Montreal, following another stroke. Bibliographic Citation link.
Back to Top