During her time, George Eliot defied societal expectations for women and went on to become one of the leading English novelists of the 19th century.

Born Mary Anne Evans, Eliot grew up in an era when women could not go to university, but her fierce intellect and curiosity compelled her to seek an education elsewhere. Her views on religion, marriage and art made her a controversial figure, yet she wrote a literary masterpiece that sharply reflected these beliefs: Middlemarch.

In this talk, Professor Dinah Birch offers an introduction to, as well as reflections on the life, work and legacy of, Eliot in this bicentenary year of her birth.

About The Speaker

Dinah Birch

Dinah Birch is Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool. She has published widely on Victorian literature, especially on Ruskin, the Brontë sisters, George Eliot, and Trollope. She broadcasts regularly and writes for the Times Literary Supplement and the London Review of Books.