The Life of Charlotte Bronte (Google eBook)

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Digireads.com Publishing, Jan 1, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography
13 Reviews
Elizabeth Gaskell's "The Life of Charlotte Bronte" is the official biography of Charlotte Bronte. Having been invited by the Bronte family to undertake the endeavor of writing Charlotte s biography, Elizabeth Gaskell drew upon an exhaustive collection of letters, interviews of those who knew the author, and recollections of her own experiences with the author, whom she was a personal friend of. Elizabeth Gaskell as a fellow Victorian female writer brings great insight into the life and accomplishments of the talented Charlotte Bronte.
  

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - thatotter - LibraryThing

After her first meeting with Charlotte Brontė, Elizabeth Gaskell wrote the following in a letter to a friend: "She and I quarrelled & differed about almost every thing,-she calls me a democrat, & can ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - emanate28 - LibraryThing

A fascinating read, especially considering it was written by someone who was Charlotte's friend. I had no idea that Charlotte Bronte's life was so difficult and tragic. Reading about her life gave me ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

VOLUME 1
3
CHAPTER II
7
CHAPTER III
19
CHAPTER IV
28
CHAPTER V
36
CHAPTER VI
44
CHAPTER VII
55
CHAPTER VIII
64
VOLUME 2
144
CHAPTER II
150
CHAPTER III
178
CHAPTER IV
190
CHAPTER V
200
CHAPTER VI
207
CHAPTER VIII
218
CHAPTER IX
224

CHAPTER IX
86
CHAPTER X
94
CHAPTER XI
101
CHAPTER XII
117
CHAPTER XIII
129
CHAPTER XIV
136
CHAPTER X
235
CHAPTER XI
248
CHAPTER XII
255
CHAPTER XIII
265
CHAPTER XIV
278
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Elizabeth Gaskell was the daughter of a Unitarian clergyman, who was also a civil servant and journalist. Her mother died when she was young, and she was brought up by her aunt in Knutsford, a small village that was the prototype for Cranford, Hollingford and the setting for numerous other short stories. In 1832, she married William Gaskell, a Unitarian clergyman in Manchester. She participated in his ministry and collaborated with him to write the poem "Sketches Among the Poor" in 1837. "Our Society at Cranford" was the first two chapters of "Cranford" and it appeared in Dickens' Household Words in 1851. Dickens liked it so much that he pressed Gaskell for more episodes, and she produced eight more of them between 1852 and 1853. She also wrote, mainly for Dickens, "My Lady Ludlow" and "Lois the Witch," a novella that concerns the Salem witch trials. "Wives and Daughters: An Every-day Story" ran in Cornhill from August 1864 to January 1866. The final installment was never written but the ending was known and the novel exists now virtually complete. The story centers on a series of relationships between family groups in Hollingford. Most critics agree that her greatest achievement is the short novel "Cousin Phillis." Gaskell was also followed by controversy. In 1853, she offended many readers with "Ruth," which explored seduction and illegitimacy that led the "fallen woman" into ostracism and inevitable prostitution. The novel presents the social conduct in a small community when tolerance and morality clash. Critics praised the novel's moral lessons but Gaskell's own congregation burned the book and it was banned in many libraries. In 1857, "The Life of Charlotte Bronte" was published. The biography was initially praised but angry protests came from some of the people it dealt with. Gaskell wrote of Bronte's version on his dismissal from his tutoring position. He blamed it on his refusal to be seduced by his employer's wife. She was threatened with legal action but, with the help of her husband, the problems were resolved. Gaskell was against any biographical notice of her being written during her lifetime. After her death in 1865, her family refused to make family letters or biographical data available.

Bibliographic information