Special Collections Librarian Sarah Horowitz will be speaking on “Cranford Illustrated: Gender, Nostalgia, and the Gift Book” as part of the Feminist Tea Series on Wednesday, September 7 in Evald Great Hall at 4:00.
Her talk will center on Hugh Thomson’s illustrated edition of Elizabeth Gaskell’s novel Cranford, published in 1891. Thomson was a member of the “Wig and Powder School,” whose artists typically illustrated older novels or stories in a nostalgic manner. This talk will explore issues of feminism, illustration, and the gift book in Thomson’s Cranford. The convergence of Thomson‘s illustrations, text, and the book‘s physical container lead to the suppression of Gaskell‘s serious attempts to address the lives of women considered superfluous in Victorian England.