Elizabeth Gaskell and Charles Dickens

Ref: C3746173

This course looks at the relationship between Charles Dickens and Elizabeth Gaskell. We will look at two texts published in the same year: 'Hard Times' by Dickens, set in a fictitious Victorian industrial town, and 'North and South' by Elizabeth Gaskell, focusing on relations between employers and workers in Manchester from the point of view of the working poor. We will look at the socio-historical positioning of these texts, but also the impact of literary collaboration and the impact of literary periodicals in the nineteenth century.

Course aim

This course looks at the relationship between Elizabeth Gaskell and Charles Dickens, focusing on two texts set in the industrial north of England.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline and http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • This course is for a group of around 15 students studying in a live video-learning platform conference and an online digital learning environment platform from the comfort of your own home.
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Approach literary texts in a critical way and discuss my findings with fellow students.
  • Understand and engage with the literary concerns of the 19th century.
  • View the selected texts in their socio-historical context.
  • Understand the impact of literary collaboration and the literary periodical in the nineteenth century.
  • Examine the portrayal of the working classes in 19th century novels set in the industrial north.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • You will also need access to the internet outside of your sessions. You could do this using a smart phone, tablet, laptop or a desktop computer (at home or through a library etc.).
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • Week 1: Historical and Sociological Context (no pre-reading) Weeks 2&3: Charles Dickens, Hard Times Weeks 4&5: Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South Week 6: Household Words and All the Year Round: Selected short stories (on Canvas) Texts to be supported with essays, poems and letters.

What can I do next?

Download full course information sheet

Elizabeth Gaskell and Charles Dickens

Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2020
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions
  • I declare that the address I have provided is correct and that I will provide evidence of this and my eligibility to live and work in the UK

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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