Gilman is rare among Gald6s scholars in his attention to linguistic matters; anyone who has tried translating Gald6s's work will, like Gilman, appreciate the brilliance of his manipulation of register and cliche. (If, as has been said, fondness for cliche is a key characteristic of postmodernism, this is another aspect of Gald6s's work that is surprisingly modern.) Gilman is writing at a time (1961) when Gald6s's reputation was at a low ebb (the Franco regime disliked the anticlericalism of his eal:ly and late work, but promoted his historical novels for patriotic reasons, thus alienating the opposition too). His article gives a useful summary of previous attitudes to Gald6s's work. Gilman's basically representational approach to Gald6s's use of language (viewed as the reproduction of existing speech patterns) is typical of criticism of the 1960s; however he stresses the uses to which Gald6s puts his material, and is particularly sensitive to his exploitation of ambivalence. Gilman's interest in the fictional representation of speech raises issues about the relation of orality to literacy in the realist novel: readers of Walter J. Ong's Orality and Literacy (1982, Methuen, London) might want to explore this area. In his suggestion that the novel represents the social advancement of its working-class heroine in terms of her increasing linguistic competence, Gilman anticipates the insights of recent theoretical work on the relationship of women to language. Gilman's book on Gald6s (1981) remains one of the major works in English.