This is the first critical anthology in English that aims to give an overview of Gald6s's novels. It is designed for two kinds of reader. First, students of European literature who do not have a knowledge of Spanish but are interested in establishing cultural connections across national boundaries. Second, specialists in Spanish literature wanting an introduction to Gald6s's novelistic output and to the range of critical writing on his work. I am assuming both kinds of reader will be interested in critical theory, by which I mean an understanding of the premises underlying criticism of the past as well as an awareness of recent theoretical developments. My main motivation for putting this collection together has been an increasing discomfort at what seems to me a general conservatism in Spanish studies, when compared with the adventurousness of criticism in the English field, or even that of Latin America. The essays included here are intended to trace the historical development of criticism on Gald6s, and to bring readers' attention to the ways in which recent scholars have applied the insights of critical theory to his work. I hope this book may playa role in stimulating new approaches to Gald6s's work, both by providing models that suggest possibilities for further research, and by indicating areas still to be explored.