We have several of Oxford World’s Classics editions in our library and are quite partial to their expanded editions. From Austen to Radcliffe to Burney to Gaskell, whatever they take on, their introductions and supplemental material are excellent.
The news of this new revised paperback edition of Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford is quite exciting. Due out on June 9, 2011 in the UK and August 15, 2011 in the US from Oxford University Press, it will include a new introduction, notes and additional supplemental material. We are quite certain that our friend Katherine at Gaskell Blog will also be anxious to get her mits on it too. Here is a description from the publisher:
A vivid and affectionate portrait of a provincial town in early Victorian England, Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford describes a community dominated by its independent and refined women. This edition includes two related short pieces by Gaskell, “The Last Generation in England” and “The Cage at Cranford.” Dinah Birch’s introduction reflects recent revaluations of Gaskell’s work and the growing recognition that Cranford is much more than the gently charming comedy that is was once taken to be. The book includes an up-to-date bibliography and expanded notes.
- A new edition of a much-loved classic, Elizabeth Gaskell’s comic portrayal of a Victorian small town dominated by women.
- Dinah Birch’s introduction reflects recent revaluations of Gaskell’s work, focusing on Gaskell’s response to social change as it transformed the lives of provincial women, and the growing recognition that Cranford is much more than the gently charming comedy that is was once taken to be.
- Includes two related short stories, ‘The Cage at Cranford’ and ‘The Last Generation in England’.
- An appendix includes a selection of extracts from Dickens, Dinah Craik, Wilkie Collins, Ruskin and other contemporary novelists and social commentators on the coming of the railway, banking failures, household management, fashion, Oriental entertainers and the novel’s first reviewers to illustrate the diverse contexts in which Cranford took its place.
- Up-to-date bibliography and expanded notes.
- Introduction by Dinah Birch.
- Up–to-date bibliography.
- Revised chronology.
- Explanatory Notes by Dinah Birch.
- Appendix of contemporary responses to the novel and contemporary comment on household management, costume, financial and commercial controversies relevant to the text.
- Reset Gaskell text.
ABOUT THE EDITORS
Elizabeth Porges Watson is Lecturer in English at the University of Nottingham. Dinah Birch is Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool.
Many of you may be familiar with the story of Cranford from the two BBC/PBS mini-series starring Judi Dench, Eileen Atkins and an incredible British cast. It was a delightful adaptation of Gaskell’s short stories and we encourage you to read our reviews and seek out this new edition of the novel when it is released in August. Mrs. Gaskell’s characterizations are humorous, charming and poignant, and we are very pleased to see her being given this new edition which appears to be quite thorough in scholarly research and engaging detail.
Cranford, by Elizabeth Gaskell (Oxford World’s Classic)
Oxford University Press (June 9, 2011 in UK) (Aug 15, 2011 in US)
Trade paperback (256) pages
- Our review of Cranford (Naxos Audiobooks)
- Our review of Cranford (2007) miniseries on PBS
- Our review of Return to Cranford (2009) on PBS
- Our review of North and South (Naxos Audiobooks)
Cover image courtesy of Oxford University Press © 2011; text Laurel Ann Nattress © 2011, Austenprose.com
How exciting! I read Cranford two summers ago while I was in Cairo, Egypt. One of my fellow Dominican friars came to my room to ask me a question one morning, and when I opened my door, I had tears streaming down my face. He asked me what was wrong, and I held up my paperback copy of the book to explain. Truly a delightful collection of stories! So Victorian in its pull at the heart-strings.
Br. Paul, OP
I read Cranford a more by the author 2 years ago and found the books delightful. This new edition sounds wonderful.
That was supposed to read I read Cranford and more
Lovely cover! :)
This sounds like a “must have” edition of Cranford!
The PBS series is a wonderful, literal example of the “sum being greater than its parts”, as the series was drawn from two other of Elizabeth Gaskell’s novels, as well as Cranford!
Once again, the BBC commissioned a talented composer, Carl Davis, to write the music for this series and what a haunting theme he gave us!
Cranford was required reading for me, in eighth grade but what a difference fifty years makes! I never tire of it now, and often enjoy listening to the Naxos audio book, in the car, and have given the Penguin Classic edition to each one of my four granddaughters!
Thanks for the recommendation.