By Rob Breton, Nipissing University and Gregory Vargo, New York University

Welcome. Chartist Fiction Online is a website for scholars, students and others interested in Chartist fiction, the Chartist periodical press, or Victorian popular literature. It contains a database of the fiction – novels and extracts from novels, short stories, and literary reviews – printed in newspapers and journals associated with the movement for working-class political rights known as Chartism. The database includes over 900 entries from nearly 35 papers, both by professed Chartists such as Ernest Jones and Thomas Cooper and by non-Chartists who nonetheless saw their work in Chartist papers, including Charles Dickens, Harriet Beecher Stowe, George Sand, and Douglas Jerrold.  

The design of the database allows users to explore the vast range of fiction printed in the Chartist press in a number of different ways (see the FAQ for how to best search the site). We continue to add to the database and the site and welcome suggestions from the community.


Chartism was more than a political movement. In the 1840s, working-class families could attend Chartist Sunday Schools, shop at a Chartist co-operative store, or dance at a Chartist concert. Getting Parliament to accept the six points of the Charter was the primary goal, but a corresponding attempt to recognize and develop an independent cultural identity for working people was increasingly understood as a necessary step in the development of a politicized working class. More...


We would like to thank Charline Jao for her important contributions to the project, especially her remarkable work on the timeline and exhibits page as well as her indefatigable efforts entering data and helping construct the site. We also thank Jenny Kijowski for her invaluable assistance with design and technical aspects of the site. Finally, we thank the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at NYU for financial support for this project.

How to Cite

Breton, Rob and Gregory Vargo, eds. Chartist Fiction Online. [13 August 2018]. (http://chartistfiction.hosting.nyu.edu/home).



© 2018 Rob Breton and Gregory Vargo (last updated January 15, 2019)