Some Appointed Work to Do: Women and Vocation in the Fiction of Elizabeth Gaskell


Elizabeth Gaskell's work and life are being rediscovered against a backdrop of Victorian middle-class women's experience by many feminist scholars. Viewed in this century as conventional and conservative, Gaskell may instead be regarded as a radical for her time, because she challenged widely-held assumptions about the nature of women, their proper sphere, and their participation in the public realm. Examining the theme of work in Gaskell's novels, Colby presents this Victorian novelist as an effective advocate of change as she tried to create space for women within the world of work.


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