Bronte Society Bicentenary Conference 2016

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Manchester 19 -21 August 2016

Manchester 19 -21 August 2016

19 - 21 August 2016, The Midland Hotel, Manchester

The Brontë Society is proud to present its 2016 Conference, which will be held in Manchester in August.

In honour of Charlotte Brontë’s 200th birthday, the Brontë Society has chosen to concentrate on the issue which most concerned Charlotte herself – the position of women in the mid-19th century. To examine the many facets of this subject, the speakers will address the theme from many different angles.

Our keynote speaker is Germaine Greer late of Warwick University, for whom this topic is famously of particular interest. Among the other guest speakers are Professor Sally Shuttleworth of Oxford University, a formidable expert on the medical and mental problems of women in the early Victorian era; Ms Claire Harman, noted author of the new biography, Charlotte Brontë, a Life; and last, but by no means least, Professor Christine Alexander, Emeritus Professor at the University of New South Wales, who is currently working on the first new scholarly edition of Jane Eyre in over 40 years.


We have chosen Manchester for this conference as this city holds a significant place in Charlotte’s life and work. It was here, while nursing her father after his cataract operation, that she began to write Jane Eyre – completing ‘in a fever’ the entire Lowood School section in a matter of weeks. And it was also here that she visited her great friend, Elizabeth Gaskell, at her house in Plymouth Grove. That house is now open to the public.

The conference venue for this very special year is the Midland Hotel – a very beautiful and historic hotel, eminently suitable for a conference that is not only a historic event, but also a celebration! Located in the very heart of Manchester, it is adjacent to the magnificent Central Library and the historic Manchester Art Gallery.  The hotel will be open to delegates from 2pm on Friday 19 August. 

The conference is currently fully booked. To add your name to a waiting list, please contact Membership Officer Linda Ling on

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