Given the current situation, listed events may be subject to change. Please double-check arrangements before leaving home. Do stay safe: we hope to see you again in person at our events before too long.

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April 2021

‘Knutsford’ Meeting (online) – April 2021

27 April, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom

Our April study session, hosted by Dr Diane Duffy, continues our exploration of the short story, 'A Dark Night's Work'. You can read Dr Duffy's blog post about the story here.  And here are her points for discussion. The meeting will take place over  Zoom, with invitations being sent to members by email nearer the time.  The events are free and open to all. If you're not a member of the Gaskell Society, you're still welcome to join us. Just contact us…

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The Life of Charlotte Brontë – a manuscript workshop

29 April, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£6

An introductory workshop to the manuscript of The Life of Charlotte Brontë hosted by Dr Lucy Hanks. Attendees will learn about how the biography was written and edited by Elizabeth Gaskell and her husband William. The workshop will be interactive, giving participants the opportunity to read and transcribe controversial portions of the manuscript - such as material relating to Cowan Bridge and Charlotte Brontë's relationship with M. Héger - and reflect on how it changes their perspective of the memoir. Lucy has just…

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May 2021

Reading the Nineteenth Century – Esther Waters

12 May, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£10

Join Sherry Ashworth for the last in this perennially popular reading course – now online – to explore depictions of motherhood in the nineteenth-century novel. In this session we’ll be exploring George Moore’s Esther Waters. Grab your book and hunker down for some absorbing spring-time reading, and then join the session for a fun and informative closer look at the text and the context of the novel. The course is suitable for the general reader who wants to delve deeper…

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Why She Wrote

19 May, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£4

Dive into the fascinating, unexpected, and inspiring stories behind the greatest women writers in the English language as the amazing Bonnets at Dawn launch their new book. The engaging duo talk about their Elizabeth Gaskell chapter and consider her work, along with that of other women writers, including Jane Austen, Louisa May Alcott, Alice Dunbar Nelson and Anne Lister. They ask a simple question: in a time when being a woman writer often meant being undervalued, overlooked, or pigeonholed, why…

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Sons and Mothers: Lawrence, Larkin and the Maternal Muse

26 May, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£4

This compelling talk explores the work of two of the finest English writers of the 20th century; DH Lawrence and Philip Larkin. Join Philip Watts for a fascinating look at how each writer’s relationship with his mother influenced their work. Find out how D H Lawrence, regarded as the ‘greatest imaginative novelist of our generation’, affected Larkin’s poetry so many years later. Enjoy readings of several complete poems and see why Larkin’s work was once described as ‘a poetry from…

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July 2021

Houses and Homes in Literature: From Shakespeare to the Present Day

7 July, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£4

This entertaining online talk with readings begins with the Gaskells’ acquisition of their house in Plymouth Grove and its reflection in North and South. Writer and guide Philip Watts explores the significance of writers’ domestic places and spaces by stitching together a patchwork quilt of literary extracts from Shakespeare to the present day.  

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August 2021

Romance and Reality: Elizabeth Gaskell’s debt to Sir Walter Scott

4 August, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£4

It is hard to imagine the hard hitting industrial novels written by Elizabeth Gaskell having much in common with the romances of the Middle Ages and early modern England popularised by Walter Scott in the early 19th century. Yet Scott began the transformation of fiction by introducing the public world of political conflict into the private world of individuals. His influence did not end there. Scott’s impact ranged from publication styles to the recording of regional customs and traditions, giving…

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November 2021

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman – Mary Wollstonecraft’s Influence on the Writings of Elizabeth Gaskell

17 November, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Zoom, online only, by invitation United Kingdom
£4

Back by popular demand! This sell-out talk by Dr Diane Duffy explores the life and work of Mary Wollstonecraft, a pioneer of feminist thought in the UK, and her influence on Elizabeth Gaskell’s writing. Wollstonecraft is firmly back in public consciousness, due to the head-turning new statue in her honour, by artist Maggi Hambling. Join us for this fascinating online talk, recently reviewed as ‘fascinating, engaging, entertaining and informative’, ‘great talk with really interesting links and parallels’ and ‘very informative,…

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July 2022

The Gaskell Society Conference 2022

Friday 8 July, 2022 - Monday 11 July, 2022
Celtic Royal Hotel, Bangor Street
Caernarfon, North Wales LL55 1AY United Kingdom
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The Gaskell Society committee has taken the difficult decision to postpone Conference until 2022. Although there is a possibility that we could have gone ahead with Conference for 2021, we felt we couldn't run the risk of asking members to commit deposits while there was any chance that it would have to be cancelled. We are all sad about this but I'm sure it's the right decision. So - the new dates are - 8th - 11th JULY 2022 - please do…

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