Elizabeth Gaskell

Standard Name: Gaskell, Elizabeth
Birth Name: Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson
Nickname: Lily
Married Name: Elizabeth Gaskell
Indexed Name: Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell
Pseudonym: Cotton Mather Mills
Pseudonym: The Author of Mary Barton etc.
Self-constructed Name: E. C. Gaskell
Elizabeth Gaskell , one of the foremost fiction-writers of the mid-Victorian period, produced a corpus of seven novels, numerous short stories, and a controversial biography of Charlotte Brontë . She wrote extensively for periodicals, as well as producing novels directly for the book market, often on issues of burning interest: her industrial novels appeared in the midst of fierce debate over class relations, factory conditions and legislation; Ruth took a fallen woman and mother as its protagonist just as middle-class feminist critique of gender roles emerged. Gaskell occupies a bridging position between Harriet Martineau and George Eliot in the development of the domestic novel.
Photograph of a well-known head-and shoulders drawing of Elizabeth Gaskell by George Richmond, 1851. She looks calmly at the viewer, her smooth hair parted in the middle, with a ribbon or scarf hanging from her head and a bow at her neckline. She thought the drawing on the whole a good likeness. National Portrait Gallery.
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Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Literary responses Margaret Sandbach
Writing for the Athenæum, Elizabeth Gaskell was convinced the author was a woman because the person who would call a horse a pleasure-giving thing, and talk so fluently of imaginings and questionings...
Literary responses Frances Hodgson Burnett
The American reviews were highly flattering. The reviewer for the Boston Transcript could think of no more powerful work from a woman's hand in the English language, not even George Eliot at her best.
Gerzina, Gretchen. Frances Hodgson Burnett. Chatto and Windus, 2004.
Literary responses Anthony Trollope
AT 's reputation grew steadily over the appearance of these novels. Elizabeth Gaskell wrote: I wish Mr. Trollope would go on writing Framley Parsonage for ever.
Matthew, Henry Colin Gray, Brian Harrison, and Lawrence Goldman, editors. Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.
Literary responses Adelaide Procter
Athenæum reviewer H. F. Chorley , sandwiching his discussion of A Chaplet of Verses between those of two other works by earnest women, expressed some annoyance at its assured and zealous sectarianism and regretted...
Literary responses Barbara Pym
BP 's father wrote to her on 3 May 1950 commending this novel, which he had not expected to enjoy since he preferred mysteries.
Wyatt-Brown, Anne M. Barbara Pym: A Critical Biography. University of Missouri Press, 1992.
Robert Liddell , who had been familiar with it throughout...
Literary responses Anna Letitia Barbauld
Literary admirers of the hymns included Hannah More , Anna Seward , and Elizabeth Carter , who found some passages amazingly sublime.
McCarthy, William. Anna Letitia Barbauld, Voice of the Enlightenment. The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008.
The innumerable children who loved and later remembered them included Mary Anne Schimmelpenninck
Literary responses Elizabeth Rigby
Brontë also indulged in assumptions about gender and class in her reading of the critique. She wrote: I read The Quarterly without a pang, except that I thought there were some sentences disgraceful to the...
Literary responses Anna Brownell Jameson
A Commonplace Book was reviewed by the Literary Gazette, the Athenæum (by Henry Fothergill Chorley ), The Spectator and Gentleman's Magazine.
Johnston, Judith. Anna Jameson: Victorian, Feminist, Woman of Letters. Scolar Press, 1997.
Elizabeth Gaskell pronounced herself in a letter to ABJ delighted with its graceful suggestive wisdom.
Jameson, Anna Brownell. Anna Jameson: Letters and Friendships (1812-1860). Erskine, Beatrice CarolineEditor , T. Fisher Unwin, 1915.
Literary Setting Mary Louisa Molesworth
This novel is the story of an unhappy marriage. The male protagonist, mentioned twice in the title, proves not to be a good husband. The novel is set in Mallingford, an unflattering portrayal of Knutsford...
Material Conditions of Writing Charlotte Brontë
CB 's stay in Brussels (as well as contributing eventually to Villette) produced a number of French exercises or devoirs, plus her subsequent letters to Constantin Heger . Four of the letters (of which...
Material Conditions of Writing Harriet Beecher Stowe
HBS used her earlier travels in Europe as material for a travel guide for Americans. She had met Germaine de Staël and Elizabeth Gaskell while in Europe, and had voraciously read everything by George Sand
Material Conditions of Writing Mary Angela Dickens
The journal All the Year Round, founded by MAD 's grandfather and then edited by her father, was one of the first and most significant platforms for her short stories and serialized novels. Other...
Occupation Richard Hengist Horne
Reports such as Horne's also provided writers of protest literature such as Benjamin Disraeli , Charles Dickens , and Elizabeth Gaskell with material which they incorporated into their fiction. Elizabeth Barrett 's The Cry of...
Occupation Eva Figes
EF had a long stint as co-editor of this series, which includes works on Margaret Atwood , Jane Austen , Elizabeth Bowen , Elizabeth Barrett Browning , Frances Burney , Willa Cather , Colette ,...
Occupation Selina Davenport
During her marriage SD worked at running a school, which, however, was far from profitable. She also supported her daughters through her writing, and opened another unsuccessful school at Greenwich after she left her husband....


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