Set in the context of Victorian social and medical debate, this novel is about rebellion, posing fundamental questions about the nature of social authority and obedience. This revised edition draws on recent theoretical work on gender and class.
"Romance and Finance"
Molly Gibson lost her mother when she was a child. Any stepmother would have been a shock, but the new Mrs Gibson is a self-absorbed, silly little widow, and Molly's unhappiness is compounded by the realisation that her father has come to regret his second marriage.
A portrait of the residents of an English country town in the mid-19th century, Cranford relates the adventures of Miss Matty and Miss Deborah, two middle-aged spinster sisters striving to live with dignity in reduced circumstances.
"Best Cranford Reading!"
Elizabeth Gaskell's remarkable first novel, Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life portrays a love that defies the rigid boundaries of class with tragic consequences.
"Moments of wonderful intensity"
A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Elizabeth Gaskell's classic novel of everyday provincial life in the 1820s, 'Wives and Daughters', first broadcast in the 'Woman's Hour Drama' slots from 29 November 2010 - 10 December 2010.'Wives and Daughters' was written in the 1860s and serialised in the Cornhill Magazine. It is set in the 1820s and deals to a large extent with the position of women in society.
"What an enjoyable yarn!"
The orphaned heroine Ruth, apprenticed to a dressmaker, is seduced and then abandoned by wealthy Henry Bellingham. Shamed in the eyes of society by her illegitimate son, and yet rejecting the opportunity to marry her seducer, Ruth finds a path that affirms we are not bound to repeat our mistakes.
Lady Ludlow's appalling snobbery, prejudice and bred-in-the-bone conviction as to the superiority of the English aristocracy and their feudal way of life are deliciously tested, and found wanting, in this gently radical tale of the collapse of a social system. Elizabeth Gaskell's My Lady Ludlow is a brilliant picture of the shift in power in a rural northern village, from the velvety feudal Ludlows to the glitter of the new money rattling through the system courtesy of the brazen baker from Birmingham.
This charming piece of social observation throws a gentle spotlight on life in a small village in northern England of the 1850s. The middle-aged ladies, existing in rather impoverished circumstances, nevertheless maintain the rules of politeness which they feel they should live by.
"A good listen, classic Gaskell!"
This celebration of iconic female writers from the 19th and 20th centuries features eight full-length stories about a range of female interests and experiences. Included are a novella, "The Watsons", by Jane Austen, as well as other gems, such as "Bliss" by Katherine Mansfield, "The Parvenue" by Mary Shelley, "A Pair of Silk Stockings" by Kate Chopin, and "The Half Brothers" by Elizabeth Gaskell.
"Wonderfully timeless tales, fabulously narrated!"
Margaret Hale returns home to her family in the rural south of England, after living with a wealthy aunt for 10 years, learning how to become a proper young woman. She is not home for long before her life is uprooted and her family moves to a town called Milton, in Northern England, where her father intends to be a tutor, leaving their Pastoral life, and the Church of England behind.
"North and South"
This collection of short stories contains several gothic tales to bear macabre and chilling witness to writers as diverse as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Elizabeth Gaskell, Edgar Allan Poe, Wilkie Collins, and Edith Nesbit. These tales are designed to unsettle you, just a little, while you sit back and take in their words as they lead you on a walk to places you'd perhaps rather not visit on your own. Our stories are "The Wedding Knell" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Old Nurse's Story" by Elizabeth Gaskell, and more.
Elizabeth Gaskell highlights the difference between the middle and working classes in this tale set in the time of the Industrial Revolution. A largely autobiographical story, she also highlights the good that each group can do for each other, and the friendships and understandings that can blossom between two seemingly irreconcilable means and modes of life. Gaskell shows her great love of people, and of love itself, in this touching and enlightening tale.
Against a background of industrial unrest, misery, suspicion, jealousy, and the deaths of family and dear friends, the star-crossed love between mill owner John Thornton and the cultivated Margaret Hale is put to the test.
Seventeen-year-old Molly Gibson worships her widowed father. But when he decides to remarry, Molly's life is thrown off course by the arrival of her vain, shallow, and selfish stepmother. There is some solace in the shape of her new stepsister, Cynthia, who is beautiful, sophisticated and irresistible to every man she meets. Soon the girls become close, and Molly finds herself cajoled into becoming a go-between in Cynthia's love affairs. But in doing so, Molly risks ruining her reputation in the gossiping village of Hollingford - and jeopardizing everything with the man she is secretly in love with.
A glorious collection of some of the finest British short stories ever written. The Dog - Arnold Bennet, Not On The Passenger List - Barry Pain, The Old Man's Tale About The Queer Client - Charles Dickens, The Half Brothers - Elizabeth Gaskell, The Veiled Portrait - James McGovan, Markheim - Robert Louis Stevenson, The Bottle Imp - Robert Louis Stevenson, The Adventures Of The Kind Mr. Smith - William J. Locke, The Man Of Mystery - Barry Pain, The Brazilian Cat - Sir. Arthur Conan Doyle.
"Can't listen to this!"
A "Bluebeard" story in which a young woman marries a man whom she discovers has killed his previous wives and is trying to kill her as well.
Elizabeth Gaskell's comic portrait of early Victorian life in a country town describes with poignant wit the uneventful lives of its lady-like inhabitants, offering an ironic commentary on the separate spheres and diverse experiences of men and women. As the external world necessarily impinges even on Cranford, the unlikely juxtapositions of old and new brought about by the pace of change are also explored.
When Margaret Hale moves with her father from the comfort of the south of England to the industrial north, she is at first repulsed by what she sees; and then when she discovers the conditions under which the workers are forced to live, she is outraged. But this throws her into direct conflict with the powerful young mill-owner, John Thornton. Using personal passions to explore deep social divisions, North and South is a great romance and one of Elizabeth Gaskell's finest works.
"Great example of woman empowerment"
When her father leaves the church in a crisis of conscience, Margaret Hale is uprooted from her comfortable home in Hampshire to move with her family to the north of England. Initially repulsed by the ugliness of her new surroundings in the industrial town of Milton, Margaret becomes aware of the poverty and suffering of local mill workers and develops a passionate sense of social justice. This is intensified by her tempestuous relationship with the mill owner and self-made man John Thornton.
Cousin Phillis - a miniature masterpiece - is set in the 1840s, when the coming of the railway was changing the face of England, and quiet rural communities, coming into contact with the outside world, were changed forever. The story focuses on the effect these changes have on a naïve country girl, Phillis, as she encounters love, with all its pains and pleasures, for the first time.
"The coming of the railway in the 19th century..."