The Gaskell Society

The Gaskell Society

Celebrating the life and work of Elizabeth Gaskell

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Online Talk: Mary Barton – An Introduction

Wednesday 18 January, 2023, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm GMT


A new season of Mary Barton events begins at Elizabeth Gaskell’s House with this introduction to her first novel, Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life. The story is a tale of class strife, romantic love and action adventure as Mary Barton, daughter of a trade unionist, is torn between the working-class Jem Wilson and mill owner’s son Henry Carson after a tragic shooting. Mary’s dilemma powerfully dramatises the historical reality of Victorian life and foresees the class struggle and romantic plot of later novels such as ‘North and South’. Find out more about the context in which the book was written, including industrial Manchester and Elizabeth’s personal life with speaker, Elizabeth Williams.