The Gaskell Society

The Gaskell Society

Celebrating the life and work of Elizabeth Gaskell

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Industrial Labour and Cultural Engagement in the Long Nineteenth Century

Thursday 18 August, 2022, 9:00 am - Friday 19 August, 2022, 6:30 pm BST

This conference is designed to expand on the remit of the ‘Piston, Pen & Press’ project and to discuss and reflect upon a wider range of cultural activities engaged in by industrial workers – for example, as dramatists and theatre-goers, as musicians and composers, as artists and visitors to exhibitions and galleries – as well as considering the state of critical work in this field and new directions for research. ‘Piston, Pen & Press’ focuses primarily on Scotland and the North of England: they are also interested in papers which consider literary and other productions in Britain more widely, and in papers which connect British cultural productions to those of international industrial workers, in order to make transnational or transcultural comparisons.

One of the Piston, Pen and Press project leaders, Dr Mike Sanders, will be a familiar face to those of you who attended our 2022 Gaskell Society Conference, where he gave the talk: Giving “Help to the Mesters”: Frances Hodgson Burnett Rewrites Elizabeth Gaskell’s Industrial Fiction. Dr Sanders also delivered our 2021 Joan Leach Memorial Lecture, Stubborn Facts from the Factories: James Leach & the Industrial Background to Mrs Gaskell’s Fiction. 


To find out more about the conference, and to see the full line-up of speakers, use the booking links below.

The event is free and takes place in-person at the Friends’ Meeting House in Manchester. To book an in-person place, click here

You can also attend online –  click here to book your place. 


Thursday 18 August, 2022, 9:00 am BST
Friday 19 August, 2022, 6:30 pm BST
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Friends’ Meeting House
Mount Street
Manchester, M2 5NS
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Piston, Pen & Press
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