Greetings from Jo Pryke

Editor of The Gaskell Society Journal

11 November 1997

I feel honoured to be made editor of The Gaskell Society Journal in succession to Alan Shelston. Alan will stay with us, as Consultant Editor, and we have an editorial committee of Janet Allan, Elizabeth Williams and Alison Foster. We look forward to reaching an ever widening circle of Gaskell enthusiasts as the Journal's circulation grows and spreads.

This website gives us the opportunity to say to all Gaskell scholars that we welcome proposals for material for the Journal. Work on Gaskell's fiction, non fiction, letters or life, or matters of context, comparison, or criticism, will be carefully considered. My e-mail address is

What can I add to the reasons for our enthusiasm and affection for Elizabeth Gaskell, that my colleagues in the Society have contributed to this site? Perhaps that I am particularly interested in Gaskell as a writer about ideas. In my M.Phil. thesis, "Political Economy in Literature 1830-1860" (1986), I examined her critique of what we now call classical economics, in North and South. I was increasingly impressed by the strength and subtlety of the presentation of the arguments for and against that powerful set of ideas. I felt that despite the widening recognition of her strengths as a writer of fiction, readers are still, perhaps, often in the same position as her friends, one of whom remarked, 'All her great intellectual gifts . . . were so warmed and brightened by sympathy and feeling, that while actually with her, you were less conscious of her power than of her charm'. The more I read and study Gaskell, the more I see her as a writer fascinated by ideas, and using her stories to pursue their implications.

In connection with this, George Eliot is commonly seen as the great intellectual Victorian woman writer, and of course she was far more the professional thinker than Gaskell. I am interested, however, in the extent to which much in Gaskell's fiction actually anticipated Eliot. Now, would anyone like to do something on that for the Journal. . . ?

Warmest greetings to fellow Gaskell afficionados everywhere.

by Jo Pryke (The Gaskell Society Journal, Volume 4 [1990])

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The Gaskell Society


VOLUME 14 (2000)

Marie Fitzwilliam, "The needle not the pen: Fabric (auto)biography in Cranford, Ruth, and Wives and Daughters"
Shirley Foster, "'We sit and read and dream our time away': Elizabeth Gaskell and the Portico Library"
Linda K Hughes and Michael Lund, "Becoming Mrs Gaskell"
Mary Kuhlman, "Gaskell Studies and the Internet in 1999"
Andrew Sanders, "Serialising Gaskell: from Household Words to The Cornhill"
Joanne Shattock, "Women's Work: Victorian women workers and the press"
Larry K. Uffelman, "Elizabeth Gaskell's North and South: the novel in progress"
Patsy Stoneman, "Wives and Daughters on television"

VOLUME 13 (1999)

Josie Billington, "Faithful realism: Ruskin and Gaskell"
Alain Jumeau, "Elizabeth Gaskell on French literary ladies of the seventeenth century: Madame de Sablé and Madame de Sévigné"
Mary Kuhlman, "A survey of Gaskell scholarship, or: Things written recently about Gaskell"
Margaret Lesser , "Madame Mohl and Mrs Gaskell"
Pam Parker, "'The Power of Giving': Elizabeth Gaskell's Ruth and the politics of benevolence"
Jo Pryke, "Wales and the Welsh in Gaskell's Fiction: sex, sorrow and sense"
Terry Wyke , "The culture of self improvement: real people in Mary Barton"

VOLUME 12 (1998)

Peter Skrine, "Elizabeth Gaskell and her German Stories"
Peter Stiles, "Calvin's encounter with Cinderella: vital antinomies in Elizabeth Gaskell's 'Curious, If True' (1860)"
Janice K Kirkland, "'Curious, If True': suggesting more"
Marie Fitzwilliam, "Mr Harrison's Confessions: a study of the general practitioner's social and professional dis-ease"
Valerie Smith, "Fact or fiction, the acid test: Gaskell, Mary Barton and the vitriol"
Suzy Clarkson Holstein, "In harm's way: tolerating intolerance in Elizabeth Gaskell's fiction"

VOLUME 11 (1997)

Angus Easson, "Getting it right: Elizabeth Gaskell and The Life of Charlotte Bronte"
Heather Sharps, "Elizabeth Gaskell and Sir James P Kay-Shuttleworth - a literary relationship"
Dorothy W Collin, "Strategies of retrospection and narrative silence in Cranford and Cousin Phillis"
Simon Dentith, "Generic diversity in Elizabeth Gaskell's Mary Barton"
Robin Colby, "Elizabeth Gaskell: a model of motherhood"
Ruth McDowell Cook, "Women's work as paradigm for autonomy in Gaskell's My Lady Ludlow"
Mariaconcetta Costantini, "The Sexton's Hero"
Mitsuharu Matsuoka, "Gaskell studies and the Internet"
Shirley Foster, "Gaskell in paperback"

VOLUME 10 (1996)

Francesco Marroni, "The Shadow of Dante: Elizabeth Gaskell and The Divine Comedy"
Mary H Kuhlman, "Education through experience in North and South"
C. M. Jackson-Houlston, "Elizabeth Gaskell, Manchester song and its contexts"
Andrew Sanders, "A crisis of liberalism in North and South"
Elizabeth Leaver, "What will this world come to? Old ways and education in Elizabeth, Gaskell's My Lady Ludlow"
Siv Jansson, "Elizabeth Gaskell: writing against the angel in the house"
Anna Unsworth, "Ruskin and Cousin Phillis"
Roger S Platizky, "Mary Barton and Frankenstein"
Yoko Hatano, "Fanny Price and Molly Gibson: bearers of the country-house tradition"

VOLUME 9 (1995)

Marianne McLeod Gilchrist, "The Shaw family of Staten Island: Elizabeth Gaskell's American friends"
Mary Waters, "Elizabeth Gaskell, Mary Wollstonecraft and the Conduct Books: Mrs. Gibson as the product of a conventional education in Wives and Daughters"
William J Hyde, "'Poor Frederick' and 'Poor Peter': Elizabeth Gaskell's fraternal deviants"
Deborah A Logan, "'An unfit subject for fiction': Elizabeth Gaskell and the duty of silence"
Marion Shaw, "Elizabeth Gaskell, Tennyson and the fatal return: Sylvia's Lovers and Enoch Arden"
Wendy Craik, "'Man, vain man' in Susan Ferrier, Margaret Oliphant and Elizabeth Gaskell"

VOLUME 8 (1994)

Anna Unsworth, "Elizabeth Gaskell and German Romanticism"
Marie Fitzwilliam, "The politics behind the angel: separate spheres in Elizabeth Gaskell's, Lizzie Leigh"
Harumi James, "Secrecy in Elizabeth Gaskell's Cousin Phillis"
J A V Chapple, "William Stevenson and the Edinburgh literary scene"
Christine Alexander, "Readers and writers: Blackwood's and the Bront‘s"
Douglas S Mack, "James Hogg, Elizabeth Gaskell and the tradition of oral storytelling"
David Finkelstein, "Early nineteenth-century Scottish publishing"
Rosalind Slater, "The novelist's use of dialect"
Ian Campbell, "Scottish writers and the Industrial Revolution"

VOLUME 7 (1993)

Jeanette Eve, "The Floral and Horticultural in Elizabeth Gaskell's Novels"
Philip Yarrow, "Mrs Gaskell and France"
Peter Skrine, "Mrs Gaskell and Germany"
Kristine Swenson, "Protection or Restriction? Women's Labour in Mary Barton"
Anita C. Wilson, "Mother and Writer: A Study of Elizabeth Gaskell's Diary"

VOLUME 6 (1992)

Arthur Pollard, "Elizabeth Gaskell's young women"
Andrew Sanders, "Varieties of Religious Experience in Sylvia's Lovers"
Michael Wheeler, "Elizabeth Gaskell and Unitarianism"
K. J. Fielding, "The Sceptical Carlyles and the Unitarian Mrs Gaskell"
Peter Stiles, "Grace, Redemption and the 'Fallen Woman': Ruth and Tess of the D'Urbervilles"
J A V Chapple, "Two Unpublished Gaskell Letters from Burrow Hall, Lancashire"
Eva Ahsberg Borromeo, "Maria Edgeworth, Fredrika Bremer and Elizabeth Gaskell: Sources for Wives and Daughters"
Janet Allan, "The Scarborough Conference: 1991"

VOLUME 5 (1991)

Edward Chitham, "Elizabeth Stevenson's Schooldays"
Brenda Colloms, ""Tottie" Fox, Her Life and Background"
Barbara Brill and Alan Shelston, "Manchester: 'A Behindhand Place for Books': The Gaskells and the Portico Library"
Thomas E Recchio, "A Victorian Version of the Fall: Mrs Gaskell's Cousin Phillis and the Domestication of Myth"
Anna Unsworth, "Some Social Themes in Wives and Daughters: (2) The Social Values of the 1860s and 'Old England' Compared"
P J Yarrow, "Mrs Gaskell and Newcastle upon Tyne"
Jeanette Eve, "Elizabeth Stevenson and Harriet Carr: A Note"
Alison Foster, "A Personal View of the First Joint Bront‘/Gaskell Conference"

VOLUME 4 (1990)

J A V Chapple, "Before 'Crutches and Changed Feelings': Five Early Letters by Elizabeth, Gaskell (nŽe Stevenson)"
Jo Pryke, "The Treatment of Political Economy in North and South"
Anna Unsworth, "Some Social Themes in Wives and Daughters: (1) Education, Science and Heredity"
Peter Skrine, "Fanny Lewald and Mrs Gaskell"
Mary Thwaite, "Elizabeth Gaskell and Italy"
Angus Easson, "The Sentiment of Feelings: Emotions and Objects in Elizabeth Gaskell"
Margaret Smith, "Mrs Gaskell as a Humourist"

VOLUME 3 (1989)

Arthur Pollard, "Faith and Family: Fundamental Values in Mary Barton"
Michael Wheeler, "Two Tales of Manchester Life"
Edgar Wright, "My Lady Ludlow: Forms of Social Change and Forms of Fiction"
John Hodgson, "A Gaskell Collection at Canterbury"
Allan Shelston, "Elizabeth Gaskell's Manchester"
Wendy Craik, "Lore and Learning in Cousin Phillis"

VOLUME 2 (1988)

Jane Spencer, "Mary Barton and Thomas Carlyle"
Wendy Craik, "Lore, Learning and Wisdom: Workers and Education in Mary Barton and North and South"
Enid Duthie, "Echoes of the French Revolution in the Work of Elizabeth Gaskell"
Alan Shelston, "The Moorland Cottage: Elizabeth Gaskell and Myles Birket Foster"
Christine Lingard, "The Gaskell Collection in Manchester Central Library"
Thomas Recchio, "The Pinkerton and the Jenkyns Sisters: A Literary Source for Cranford"
Patsy Stoneman, "Elizabeth Gaskell and 'Maternal Thinking'"

VOLUME 1 (1987)

J A V Chapple, "William Stevenson and Elizabeths Gaskell"
Thomas Recchio, "Cranford and the 'lawe of kynde'"
P M Yarrow, "The Chronology of Cranford"
Barbara Brill, "My year Mr. Norton"
Francesco Marroni, "Gaskell Studies in Italy"
Bill Ruddick, "George Du Maurier: Illustrator and Interpreter of Mrsl Gaskell"