John Thornton and Margaret Hale

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Online Talk: Milton and Manchester: The backdrop to North and South

Part of North and South Season

The romance of Elizabeth Gaskell’s famous novel ‘North and South’ is set against the harsh industrial backdrop of her own city of Manchester, thinly disguised as ‘Milton’ in her writing. Her description of industrial strife between millowner John Thornton and his workers, and heroine Margaret Hale’s sympathy for the working classes has led it to be described as a ‘condition of England’ novel. So, what was the real social and industrial backdrop to ‘North and South’? Was Thornton’s factory lockout based on real events? And how did Gaskell imagine class conflict could be resolved? Join Dr Michael Sanders from Manchester University to find out more.

Tickets £4

The talk will be approx 45 mins long, with time for a short question session afterwards.

The talks have been a highlight of my year… an excellent programme of events during such challenging times..”

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Elizabeth Gaskell’s House is run by Manchester Historic Buildings Trust (charity no. 1080606) and all money gained through private tours, talks, room hire and ticket sales goes towards the ongoing maintenance and running costs of the house. If you would like to support the house with an additional donation you can do so via this link.

21st Sep 2022

7pm - 8pm

A Large Cheerful, airy house, quite out of Manchester smoke.

Charlotte Brontë on visiting the House, 1851