Mary Barton | Critical Essay by Harriet Guest

This literature criticism consists of approximately 27 pages of analysis & critique of Mary Barton.
This section contains 9,758 words
(approx. 33 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by A. B. Hopkins

Critical Essay by Harriet Guest

SOURCE: Guest, Harriet. “The Deep Romance of Manchester: Gaskell's Mary Barton.” In The Regional Novel in Britain and Ireland, 1800-1990, edited by K. D. M. Snell, pp. 78-98. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998.

In the following essay, Guest examines Mary Barton as a regional novel.

Living in Manchester

Elizabeth Gaskell's first novel, Mary Barton (1848), might seem to be determinedly regionalised or localised: it claims a local character for itself in its sub-title, A Tale of Manchester Life, and in the copious use of Lancashire dialect, supplemented and weighted with explanatory footnotes.1 Elizabeth Gaskell explained in her Preface that:

Three years ago I became anxious (from circumstances that need not be more fully alluded to) to employ myself in writing a work of fiction. Living in Manchester, but with a deep relish and fond admiration for the country...

(read more)

This section contains 9,758 words
(approx. 33 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by A. B. Hopkins