European Literature Society: The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë

The next novel to be read in the Reading Group is the second and final novel written by English author Anne Brontë; ‘The Tenant of Wildfell Hall’ was published in 1848 under the pseudonym Acton Bell. It is considered to be the most shocking of the Brontës’ novels, and it had instant and phenomenal success on publication; however, after Anne’s death, her sister Charlotte prevented its re-publication in England until 1854. Our discussion centred on the use of an odd narrator to tell the story of the woman at the centre of the novel, and the heart of the novel’s mystery: Mrs Helen Graham; however, the mystery generated might make this the most engaging of the Brontë novels. Critics now consider ‘The Tenant of Wildfell Hall’ to be one of the first feminist novels.

Our next meeting – discussing the next part of ‘The Tenant of Wildfell Hall’, tea & cake, will be on the 14th of May – after Year 10 and 12 Exams.

Mr Ahern