Dickens' Women, Paperback Book
2 out of 5 (1 rating)


In his novels Dickens presents a series of unrivalled portraits of women, young and old.

From Little Nell to Miss Havisham, these girls and women speak to us today, making us laugh and sometimes cry.

The popular British actress Miriam Margolyes will be touring the world in 2012, the bicentenary of Dickens birth, with a one-woman show about Dickens' women, and this book accompanies the show by building on the script and expanding to include many more of the female characters Dickens described and analysed so astutely in his novels.

The countries to be visited are Australia, New Zealand, the USA and India. 'Mrs Pipchin was a marvellous ill-favoured, ill-conditioned old lady, of a stooping figure, with a mottled face, like bad marble, a hook nose, and a hard grey eye, that looked as if it might have been hammered at on an anvil without sustaining any injury.'


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 96 pages, Illustrations, ports., music
  • Publisher: Hesperus Press Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Classic fiction (pre c 1945)
  • ISBN: 9781843913511

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Where I got the book: I went to see Miriam Margolyes (who is a co-author) perform the one-woman stage play of the same name at the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Afterwards she flogged the book for $20 and did a signing. You may know by now that I'm a sucker for a signed book.The middle of this slim volume is taken up by the script of the stage play. Topping and tailing it are two, well, I suppose you'd call them essays, one talking about Dickens and women generally, and the other covering some material left out of the play. Copious quotes from Dickens' work take up, I would estimate, 40% of the book.As a memento of watching the very excellent Margolyes perform, this has some value to me. She's a superb character actor, and indeed it was quite a shock to hear her talking in her normal (Oxbridge-educated-actress) voice. As a book about Dickens' attitude toward women, I'm sure there are better tomes out there. The material's not bad but not much attention has been given to arrangement, and a little more editing would have helped. I understand there's an audio CD with Margolyes reading; if you're looking for entertainment, read that instead. If you're looking for a scholarly work, keep looking

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