Dr. Jyoti Kulshrestha
The Industrial Revolution brought a gigantic transformation in the socio-economic and political sphere of the people of the nineteenth century. As factories, mills and industries were set up in large numbers, many people were rendered jobless. The contemporary authors depicted the hard realities of industrialization, strife and struggles of the working class. In Sybil or The Two Nations (1845), Benjamin Disraeli depicts the plight of the working class. Mrs. Gaskell in Mary Barton: A Tale of Manchester Life (1848), deals with the hard realities and difficulties of the working class of the Victorian age and focus on the relation between the employers and workers of the mills in Manchester. Charlotte Bronte’ Shirley (1849) is written against the backdrop of the Luddite riots uprisings in the textile industries of Yorkshire. The novel North and South (1854-55) which is set in a fictional town Milton is a comment on the mill owners and mill workers at the time of industrialization. Hard Times, Mary Barton, Michael Armstrong, The Factory Boy, Sybil and North and South are the exemplary of the time. In Hard Times (1854) Dickens created a fictional town which is known as a Coke town depicts the dangers of industrialization and the exploitation of the workers.
My paper is an effort to draw a comparison between the themes of Mary Barton and North and South and how the dilemma of the industrial workers urged Mrs. Gaskell to produce masterpieces like Mary Barton and North and South.
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