Monday, 22 February 2021

Brian Holland: ‘Angel in the House … or Angel in Heaven?’

In the first member’s presentation ever given to our group by Zoom, Brian Holland entertained us with a lively talk on 18 February 2021 entitled ‘Angel in the House … or Angel in Heaven? How the patriarchy operated in Victorian England with illustrations from the visual and verbal culture of the period.’

Brian recently completed a Master’s in Studies in Literature and Arts at Kellogg College, Oxford, and his talk was based on his Master’s dissertation (‘Fallen women and fearful men in English visual and verbal culture — 1850-70’). In a richly illustrated talk, Brian explored the double standards of the patriarchy in a period in which women tended to be categorised in binary fashion as either ‘respectable’ or transgressive.

Sunday, 17 January 2021

Virtual Tour: Brussels When the Brontës Were Here

The Arts Society Brussels enjoyed a very special tour of the city last week, as Helen MacEwan, founder of the Brussels Brontë Group, hopped on Zoom to bring alive, at least virtually, the experience of Charlotte and Emily Brontë when they were in the Belgian capital in the first half of the nineteenth century.

It was a delightful tour of Brussels in the early 1840s, illuminated with photos and paintings, as well as excerpts from letters and Charlotte’s novels, to guide the audience through the sisters’ experience on the Continent just over a decade after Belgium gained its independence.

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Helen MacEwan to talk on Brontës at Arts Society Brussels

Helen MacEwan, founder of the Brussels Brontë Group, will give a talk by Zoom for The Arts Society Brussels next week. 

Helen will take her audience on a virtual tour of Brussels at the time Charlotte and Emily Brontë were in the city in the early 1840s. 

Sunday, 22 November 2020

A Belgian-Dutch view of Charlotte Brontë’s Brussels

Charlotte Brontë’s stay in Brussels in the 1840s inspired two of her own novels and also two recent novels published on the subject. Jolien Janzing published De Meester in 2013. Si j'avais des ailes, by Nathalie Stalmans, was published in 2019.

The difference between the two writers is instructive. Stalmans is an historian and has an academic past. Janzing, for her part, is a journalist and rather fascinated by current events, which she weaves into her work.

The two have different views on Charlotte and on Brussels itself. 

Sunday, 25 October 2020

Brontë talk: The view from Leeds

How wonderful it was to join the Brussels Brontë Group for Karen Hewitt's marvellous talk about what the word "Gentleman" meant to a Victorian audience.  I could not believe I was sharing the experience with you all, it was almost like being in Brussels.

Like Monica in Dublin, my memories of all the Brontë
events are highlights of my time in Brussels.