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Cranford & Selected Short Stories

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Cranford & Selected Short Stories

ELIZABETH GASKELL

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With an Introduction and Notes by Professor Emeritus John Chapple, University of Hull The sheer variety and accomplishment of Elizabeth Gaskell’s shorter fiction is amazing. This new volume contains six of her finest stories that have been selected specifically to demonstrate this, and to trace the development of her art. As diverse in setting as in subject matter, these tales move from the gentle comedy of life in a small English country town in ‘Dr Harrison’s Confessions’, to atmospheric horror in far north-west Wales with ‘The Doom of the Griffiths’. The story of ‘Cousin Phillis’, her masterly tale of love and loss, is a subtle, complex and perceptive analysis of changes in English national life during an industrial age, while the gripping ‘Lois the Witch’ recreates the terrors of the Salem witchcraft trials in seventeenth-century New England, as Gaskell shrewdly shows the numerous roots of this furious outbreak of delusion. Whimsically modified fairy tales are set in a French chateau, while an engaging love story poetically evokes peasant life in wine-growing Germany. AUTHOR Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell, nee Stevenson (29 September 1810 12 November 1865), often referred to simply as Mrs. Gaskell, was an English novelist and short story writer during the Victorian era. She is perhaps best known for her biography of Charlotte Bronte. Her novels offer a detailed portrait of the lives of many strata of society, including the very poor, and as such are of interest to social historians as well as lovers of literature

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