Gender in Jane Eyre

“All your home comes from me, or will perform in a couple of years”. Go over the significance of gender in Bronte’s representation of the kid characters in Jane Eyre. Through my research study of Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre, I was quick to discover that the novel is a product of its time, however likewise depicts revolutionary ideas about female autonomy and the right to equality for all. Jane Eyre was composed in 1847, a time were a women’s social standing and significance was substantially less to that of her male counterpart.

A female’s primary goal was to discover a husband and calm down. Little was made of a lady’s profession options or opportunities as it was thought about daft to believe a low born lady could mature to be anything more than a governess. (Murphy, 2013) Merry E. Weisner states that “Individuals did talk less formally about a woman’s life, nevertheless, and when they did it was her sexual status and relationship to a male that mattered most.

/ A female was a virgin, spouse or widow, or at the same time a daughter, wife or mother” (Weisner, 1993, p51-52). Gender is an extremely important theme throughout Jane Eyre and can be noted especially well through a research study of the novel’s kid characters.

John Reed is a prime example of how class and gender conformities seep through the very permeable age barrier at a young age. John Reed is not your typical high born Victorian gentleman and this can be noted first through his image, “John Reed was a schoolboy of fourteen years old/ large and stout for his age, with a dingy and unwholesome skin; thick lineaments in a spacious visage, heavy limbs and large extremities. He gorged himself habitually at table, which made him bilious and gave him a dim and bleared eye and flabby cheeks” (Bronte, p4). We see him bully Jane unrelentingly at the start of the novel and this can be deducted to a number of reasons. John is indulged by his mother and thus has a feeling of self-importance and superiority. To some degree he probably takes a lead from her (who also dislikes Jane). As the only ‘man of the house’ John believes he is head and shoulders above a lowly orphan girl. He does not believe that she is worthy of what he, (by way of birth right), provides for her, and thus takes it upon himself to punish her accordingly, “you have no money, your father left you none; you ought to beg, and not to live here with gentlemen’s children like us, and eat the same meals we do, and wear clothes at our mama’s expense”(Bronte, 6)

As the only high born male in the house he feels that he has the authority to dish out verbal and physical abuse as he sees appropriate. So strong is his sense of self importance that he never feels as though he is on the losing end of an argument. A young Jane is aware of this and as a female in ‘his’ household, feels like she has to do what he says, even though she knows it will not end well. We see this when she allows him to throw a book at her after she takes one to read behind the curtain, “the volume was flung, it hit me, and I fell, striking my head against the door and cutting it.” (Bronte, 6). Although it is from this incident that Jane first finds her voice against an oppressive male figure, it’s still an insight into the psyche of a young boy in the early 1800’s, and one that certainly portrays how gender could shape a society in the early 19th century. (Hesse, 2013, 1) Helen Burns is a girl who suffers greatly from the wrath of Mr Brocklehurst and Mrs Scatcherd. Brocklehurst believes that all girls are intrinsically born indulgent and that they want the luxuries of life that only men can offer them and thus aims to humble the girls of Lowood through food deprivation and the cutting of their hair, i.e., taking away their femininity. (Capes, 2013, 1)

The conflict between Brocklehurst and Helen can on the surface, seem like a religious one, but as you delve deeper into the mind of Bronte at the time of writing, you soon find out that it has a lot more to do with gender than you might have thought. In the early 1800’s, it was men who had all the power in the church and woman were expected to serve the clergymen and on occasion help out at Sunday school. The history of Christianity is full of male martyrs who upon death are given hero status. Helen Burns serves as paradox to this idea. Helen dies of consumption, which is largely down to poor conditions she has to put up with as a result of Brocklehurst’s pious, self-righteous quest to humble the girls of Lowood. She is the epitome of good Christian values. Her ‘turn the other cheek’ outlook on life is what defines her in the novel and ultimately what Jane finds most interesting about her. Her death is beautiful, and shows a deep, sophisticated insight into what it meant to be a good Christian in the early 1800’s. Ironically, Brocklehurst’s pious crusade sees Helen, the better Christian, die.

Helen is the martyr character in Jane Eyre. She is there to portray that it doesn’t matter how good a Christian you are, women will always be subordinate to their male counterparts. Even her name ‘Burns’ signifies both the hellish life she has suffered, and also how she was damned from the start. (Creelman, 2005) Bronte uses her to show the gender conflict at the time of her writing and also as a way in which to progress Jane’s character. Jane is an average looking, intelligent, and brutally honest girl. She has been an orphan from a young age and as a lowly born, orphan female, she has faced oppression all her life. Although she has faced oppression and threats to her autonomy, she continually succeeds in showing she can be a free thinking, independent female (Murphy, 2013) The first time we see Jane stand up to male authority is through an outburst she directs towards John after he throws the book at her, “Wicked and cruel boy!” I said. “You are like a murderer–you are like a slave-driver–you are like the Roman emperors!” (Bronte, p6) It is after this she gets sent to the red room and we truly see the nature of how unfairly she is treated.

Later we see her rebuke Mrs Reed’s claim that she is deceitful and should be brought up in a manner which best suits her prospects. “I am not deceitful: if I were, I should say I loved you; but I declare I do not love you: I dislike you the worst of anybody in the world except John Reed; and this book about the liar, you may give to your girl, Georgiana, for it is she who tells lies, not I” (Bronte, 1847). It is through these comments that we see Jane’s first verbal victory against an oppressor and it marks an important point in Jane’s discovery for autonomy. Mr Brocklehurst forms an opinion about Jane because of the fact that she is a lowly female girl and also because of the account he received from Mrs Reed. Jane is someone looking to break the mould. She has her own ideas of autonomy and gender inequality. Along the way she has gained inspiration from women who have managed to succeed in one way or another. Mrs Fairfax is the authority of Lowood when Mr Brocklehurst isn’t around. She is a powerful woman, a person Jane can look up to. Not only is she powerful but she is also kind, and makes a good impression on Jane. Other examples of this include Miss Temple and Helen Burns.

On a more extreme level, Celine Varens is a woman who is at the mercy of men, but can manipulate her lovers into indulging her. She treats them badly as a result. (crossref-it.info) A young Jane soon finds out that although she is female, as long as she keeps her morals, she can succeed. Overall Jane Eyre offers us valuable insight into gender roles in the early 1800’s. Whether it’s the patriarchal way in which a 14 year old John Reed finds power, the submissive way in which a young Christian girl ‘turns the other cheek’ in the face of oppression, or how one little girl with revolutionary self-worth gains autonomy in a male dominated world, Jane Eyre remains a classic novel, and one which will remain so for many years to come.

Bibliography
Crossref-it.info/Jane-Eyre/9/1082 6/11/2013
Kristycaper.co.uk/post/19688269684/gender-and-sexism-in-charlotte-brontes-jane-eyre 7/11/2013 Jane Eyre, 1847, Penguin Books, England
Kamia Creelman, July 2005, Department of English University of New Brunswick, www.lib.unb.ca/texts/jsv/number27/creelman.htm Merry E. Wiesner- Women and Gender in Early Modern Europe, first published 1993, second edition 2000, Cambridge University Press Sharon Murphy, Lecture Notes, 2013

Suzanne Hesse- www.victorianweb.org/authors/bronte/cbronte/hesse1.htm

Reason vs. Passion in Jane Eyre

Reason and passion are two emotions that are shown by most of the characters in Jane Eyre. Some people´s behaviour is governed by rationality and they think carefully about all what they do. The opposite happens with impulsive people who follow their feelings, prevailing passion to reason. Passionate people do not think before performing their actions, because of that they are considered more authentic than people who act guided by reason. However, sometimes passion must be left behind and people have to act according to reason and consciously.

This situation is clearly shown in Jane Eyre, the novel written by Charlotte Brontë, in which the two most important characters show strong passion and reason in their personalities. Through conflict, allusion and symbolism the writer tells the story of Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester.

Conflict is used by the writer to show the collision and disagreement between two persons and also the inside conflict in a person. In the novel a conflict between two human beings is clearly expressed in the relationship that Jane has with her evil aunt Mrs.

Reed. Jane feels humiliated and denigrated by her aunt, she cannot bear any more the cruel treatment and she feels dominated by fury. The writer describes Jane´s behaviour as “..shaking from head to foot, thrilled with ungovernable excitement” (29), uncontrollable and irrepressible as all kinds of passion. The conflict between them is clearly shown by the writer when Jane says, “…I am glad you are no relation of mine: I will never call you aunt again so long as I live.” (29). The lack of love and the difficult relation between them is evident in those lines. Moreover, Jane´s life is almost always a fight between reason and passion, in the novel the author shows how women in Victorian´s times were not allowed to guide their decisions by feelings or emotions. Restrictions and limitations were ordinary in women´s life and those restrictions were the cause of many internal female conflicts. An example of this occurs with Jane when she says,”…I must renounce love and idol. One dear word comprised my intolerable duty- “Depart!””(279). In this situation Jane has to fight against her passion; against her love and hope to stay with Mr. Rochester
despite knowing that he was already married. Jane says, “..Mr. Rochester I must leave you.” (268) she is concerned about what she must do, even when it does not concurs to what she wants. Guided by her reason she leaves Thornfield and she exclaims, “Farewell! Was the cry of my heart as I left him. Despair added, Farewell for ever!.” The author shows clearly, how reason and passion can produce conflicts with other people and also internal ones.

Allusion is also used by the writer to indicate the power that passion and reason have in the characters´ personalities. Allusion to God and the Bible are common in the novel. At that time people´s behaviour was governed by Christian duties and they had to struggle between those duties and their natural human passion. Jane Eyre is not the only character who shows passion in the novel and also Mr. Rochester has a strong and fervent presence which is demonstrated by the writer in an example when he says, “…By God I long to exert a fraction of Samson´s strength, and break the entanglement like tow!”(267). The reference to Samons,(“the man of the sun”) who is mentioned in the Bible because of his supernatural strength given by God, represents the violent and uncontrollable emotions of Mr. Rochester expressed when Jane tells him her will of leaving Thornfield and him. Furthermore, allusion to God is used many times in the novel and it denotes the importance of religion at that time and the strong belief in God and divine punishments. However, many times Jane´s behaviour is against will of God but also against society´s rules. An example of that is stated by the writer when she says “…I am not talking to you now through the medium of custom, conventionalities, nor even of mortal flesh;-…”(223), it clearly shows Jane´s rebellion and audacity to talk to a man inappropriately. Besides, she says, ..”it is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God´s feet, equal,-as we are!” (223) here it is expressed a divine equality and at the same time the human passion which does not know about reason. On the other hand, allusion to God also expresses the power of faith in guiding Jane to follow her reason and an example of that is given when she says: “I will keep the law given by God; sanctioned by man. I will hold to the principles received by me when I was sane, and not mad- as I am now.” (280). Jane´s madness is actually her
passion, her love and the law of God is the sensible behaviour that she has to have, and even which she used to have. That conscious and prudent conduct is her reason, which represents the will of God. Moreover, when she leaves Mr. Rochester her last words are blessings, she says, ”God bless you, my dear master!” (281). It states her strong belief in God and the peace of the right decision making. Those allusions to God represent the importance of religion in that period of time in which the novel was written and how it influences in people´s reason and passion.

Central character´s personalities are well developed through fire, symbolism of passion and water as symbolism of reason. Fire represents passion and sexual appetite in the character of Bertha Mason, Mr. Rochester´s wife, who sets fire to his bedroom. That scene is described by Jane, who says, “Tongues of flame darted round the bed: the curtains were on fire. In the midst of blaze and vapour, Mr. Rochester lay stretched motionless, in deep sleep.” (130). The fire around the bed is a clear representation of sex and passion and it is reasserted when Mr. Rochester describes Bertha as “intemperate and unchaste” (270) which are adjectives related with uncontrollable passion and sex. Then another incident is the fire which destroys Thornfield and in which Bertha dies and Mr. Rochester goes blind. A host tells Jane the story that happens two month after her departure and he says,”…she sets fire to the hangings of the room next to her own (…) and made her way to the chamber that had been the governess” (378). It reflects Bertha´s intention to kill Rochester and Jane´s love and represents the danger of uncontrollable feelings. On the other hand, water symbolizes the extinction of fire and the reason that defeats passion. It happens when Jane saves Mr. Rochester´s life in the bedroom fire and she says, “I rushed to his basin and ewer; fortunately,(…) both were filled with water. I heaved them up, deluged the bed and its occupant” It states Jane´s intention not to follow her feelings towards Mr.Rochester but act guided by reason. Moreover, she says, “by God aid, succeeded in extinguishing the flames”, which indicates Jane´s will of acting guided by religious rules and extinguishes her inappropriate love. Fire as imagery of the danger of improper feelings and water as representation of reason and death of passion tells the character´s personalities.

In conclusion, Charlotte Brontë exposes through conflict, allusion and symbolism how passion and reason are the guide of characters´ behaviour at different situations in the novel. Jane as a child and when she is treated unjustly is guided by passion, but then when she grows up she learns how to control her passionate emotions. However, in some situation she is not able to do it and reacts with rage, for instance when Mr. Rochester tells her that she has to leave Thornfield. In contrast she follows her reason when she knows that he is already married, but it is possible because of her strength and religion belief. She takes the hard decision of leaving her love, faces an uncertain reality and only comes back when Mr. Rochester is widow. He ends up being a partial dependent husband because of his disabilities and it could be interpreted as a punishment for his excessive and improper passion. It is not a classical romantic novel but the romance genre is predominant and in the end love survives dangers and difficulties.

Essay about Reading

Ever since I started learning to read, it has been one of my favorite hobbies. I love to submerge myself into a book and get the chance to go on adventures I never can in the real world. Usually, when I get hooked on a good book, I can’t put it down. I’m not myself anymore. My reality becomes eclipsed by something as simple, yet complex, as words on paper. I begin to eat, sleep, and experience through the character in the tale.

I am the character in the tale. Although I experience these journeys vicariously, it feels real in my mind, and that’s good enough for me. When I am reading, I like to settle myself in a very quiet environment with little to no noise. I often read during the evening or at night. More often than not, I get myself a snack to chew. I also get some water to quench my thirst, especially if I’m reading a story taking place in dry conditions.

I like to lie on the sofa or on my bed because I enjoy being very comfortable while reading. Some will fall asleep whilst reading, but I usually get too absorbed by the book to do so. Something I don’t understand is when people must listen to music or have noise in the background- for me, it is very distracting. In my life, I like to think that I’ve read quite a few books. I don’t have a favorite genre of books but I read much more fiction than non-fiction. That is something I am trying to improve on- I want to read more biographies, auto-biographies, non-fiction narratives, speeches, etc.

Some books that I love are: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Gone with the Wind, Jane Eyre, A Time of Angels, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Catcher in the Rye, The Help, The Fault in Our Stars, Ender’s Game, Harry Potter and more. I want to learn how to read faster and retain information better to become a more efficient reader. I often find that I have difficulty recalling details in a book. Reading allows for a break from all the stress and scurry in life. It allow one to relax and enjoy some alone time. I love when a book is quick to get into and interesting.

The passage from Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre”

Throughout the course of this essay I will be examining an extract from the second chapter of Charlotte Bront¸’s ‘Jane Eyre’ in which Jane finds herself locked in the Red Room. I will be looking closely at the relevance of this passage to the structure of the novel overall, paying close attention to the narrative devices used.

The novel is a fictional autobiography comprising a first-person narrative, which allows the reader to see events and characters through Jane’s eyes, and therefore increases the authenticity of the text.

Jane’s experiences within the Red Room are also portrayed solely from her own point of view, giving the reader an insight into how Jane’s heightened nerves provoke an unnatural depiction of her surroundings. The room itself is described as a ‘vault’, the chair becomes a ‘pale throne’, and the bed is referred to as a ‘tabernacle’. The highly fanatical and superstitious tone mirrors the fact that the narrative is told from a child’s perspective and also illustrates the more passionate attributes of Jane’s character.

As Jane peers into the ‘great looking-glass’, a distorted reflection of herself is revealed. Bront¸ appears to use the mirror as a symbol of Jane’s inner self, as after she studies her reflection the tone of the narrative changes and becomes a critical examination of her situation and character. She views her reflection as a ‘strange little figure’ or ‘tiny phantom’, and her later description of Mr. Rochester as a ‘phantom’ could be an echo of this portrayal of herself as a child.

Halfway through the extract, the perspective shifts to the adult Jane looking back in retrospect on her experiences within the Red Room. The ‘ceaseless inward question’ that could not be answered by Jane as a child is now solved, demonstrating that Jane has been able to overcome the passion and anguish she felt in her youth, and replace it with the composed knowledge of an adult.

Bront¸ uses a significant number of linguistic techniques to highlight Jane’s emotions in this passage. The use of parallelism in the phrase ‘from morning to noon, and from noon to dusk’ stresses Jane’s seemingly endless struggle with injustice at Gateshead, and the repetition of the exclamation ‘Unjust!’ emphasises her bitterness towards the Reeds. A series of rhetorical questions and exclamations concerning her discrimination within the Reed household is followed by an extended digression in which Jane broods over the injustice of her situation. This highly emotionally charged passage is emphasised by the personification of her ‘reason’ as it speaks out against her ‘unjust’ condition in life. Her feelings are often given a voice in this way to display her innermost emotions, and also to allow the reader to identify with her thoughts and actions. The personification of ‘superstition’ as Jane describes the impending arrival of ‘her hour for complete victory’ enhances the supernatural atmosphere.

Jane’s punishment by imprisonment within the Red Room is the first of a succession of metaphorical captivities, predominantly relating to Victorian society’s attitudes towards gender, social class, and religion. Jane criticises the prejudice and superficiality of Victorian society by stating that had she been a ‘handsome’ or ‘romping’ child, her presence would have been endured ‘more complacently’. The events that take place within the Red Room are emblematic of Jane’s isolation from almost every community and society. As an orphan raised by a wealthy family, she is accustomed to the education and lifestyle of those of a higher class than herself, but she is not in possession of any money and is even shunned by the servants who describe her as ‘less than a servant’.

The low ottoman, on which Jane is commanded to sit upon, is representative of her standing in society. The image of being confined to a stool and prohibited from rising is redrawn upon at Lowood School when Mr. Brocklehurst unjustly punishes Jane in such a way. Her imprisonment in the Red Room, and in a similar way her punishment at school, acts as a reminder that she is being socially excluded. The isolation Jane experiences as a child prompts her to search her mind for drastic alternatives, such as ‘starving herself’ or ‘running away’. Although these are rather desperate options, they demonstrate her strong characteristics of determination and pride.

While within the Red Room, Jane considers the cruelty of John Reed, who taunts his mother and calls her ‘old girl’ and yet is still, in Mrs. Reed’s eyes, ‘her own darling’. Jane notices with heavy irony that John mocks his mother for her dark skin, despite it being ‘similar to his own’. Jane’s fiery nature is again displayed by her indignation of the fact that ‘no one had reproved John for wantonly striking me’. The quarrel between Jane and John Reed also establishes the theme of gender conflict within the novel. Her status as a female leaves her susceptible to John’s violence and taunting, and as he is the only son, his tyrannous character is indulged. By fighting back, Jane refuses to conform to the level of obedience that would have been expected of a female in her situation.

Bront¸ often turns to the theme of slavery as a symbol to represent the domestic and social hardships that opposed women in the eighteenth century. The narrative frequently returns to this metaphor in order to illustrate similarities between slavery and gender repression. John Reed is earlier referred to as a ‘slave-driver’, and while locked in the Red Room, Jane asks how Mrs. Reed could possibly ‘like an interloper not of her race’, thereby classifying herself as an outcast and also raising questions of racial differences and slavery.

The theme of the Red Room recurs as a symbol several times throughout ‘Jane Eyre’, reappearing in Jane’s mind on occasions when she links her present circumstances to that first feeling of humiliation she experienced in the Red Room. It becomes a leading theme throughout her life, and she recalls on the scene at many later stages in the novel to give context to her most troubled and dark experiences. Bront¸ also uses figurative language to recall her experiences within the Red Room. The metaphor ’embers of my decaying ire’ is used to illustrate Jane’s diminishing anger, and in the following chapter Jane is met with the image of a blazing fire as she wakes from her unconsciousness. These references to figurative and non-figurative fires return many times throughout the novel.

The passage is heavy with colour and sound imagery, accentuating Jane’s heightened senses and emotions while in the Red Room. The mood is intensified by the repeated descriptions of the room’s ‘silent’ atmosphere, ‘chill’ air, and the gathering of ‘quiet dust’. This somewhat ominous silence is not broken until the end of the extract when a sound fills Jane’s ears ‘like the rushing of wings’. Jane’s initial impressions of the colours within the Red Room, such as the ‘soft fawn’ and ‘blush of pink’, do not at first seem negative, but gradually the colours around her become increasingly more threatening. The colour red is highly significant, being the predominant colour within the room. Red is often used in conjunction with the themes of passion and fury, and the descriptions such as the ‘curtains of deep red damask’ mirror physically Jane’s excessively fervent character.

Charlotte Bront¸ was greatly influenced by the Gothic novels that were in fashion before the time of ‘Jane Eyre’. The Gothic novel was popularised in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, and was defined by its use of suspense, supernatural elements, and desolate locations to generate a gloomy or chilling mood. The protagonist of the novel would generally be female, and often face distressing or morbid circumstances. In this extract, Jane seems to fit this stereotypical Gothic heroine as her situation is certainly distressing and, although she faints, she demonstrates her resolve to resist those who persecute her, a strength that was common in Gothic women.

The use of suspense is another Gothic technique employed within this extract. The final paragraph of the extract begins with the short, simple sentence ‘A singular notion dawned upon me’, and then gradually the tension increases as Jane’s imagination becomes progressively more frantic and superstitious. The use of long, complex sentences and lists interspersed with commas and semi-colons give the text a fast-paced and frenzied tone. The suspense continues to increase until finally the extract reaches its climax and Jane screams.

The scene within the Red Room is loaded with intricate Gothic imagery and details. The deep red colour of the room is implicative of death and blood, and both of these aspects feature prominently in the stereotypical Gothic novel. The descriptions of the ‘rain…beating continuously’ and the ‘wind howling in the grove’ paint a vivid Gothic picture of the stormy moors that surround Gateshead. The supernatural elements in the passage, such as the ‘rushing of wings’ that fills Jane’s ears and her vision of the ‘herald of some coming vision from another world’, are the most noticeably Gothic. The usage of such obvious Gothic elements so early in the novel forecast impending Gothic ideas and locales later in the text.

It is the application of these Gothic characteristics that seem to give the novel its widespread appeal. However, although Charlotte Bront¸ incorporates many of these Gothic influences within ‘Jane Eyre’, she has developed the traditional techniques significantly from what would have been the typical Gothic of the late eighteenth century, making ‘Jane Eyre’ extremely unique in style.

‘Jane Eyre’ clearly contains many Gothic elements, but there are also many strong features of realism within the text. Bront¸ provides the reader with lengths of highly detailed prose portraying accurately Jane’s surroundings, such as the extensive descriptions of the Red Room’s interior in this extract. Careful attention is paid to illustrate thoroughly the ‘chairs…of darkly-polished old mahogany’ and the ‘piled-up mattresses and pillows of the bed’. This meticulously detailed imagery adds an element of authenticity and realism to the text, enhanced further by the references to social class and gender issues. Later in the passage, the description of the ‘herald of some coming vision from another world’ is surrounded by detailed prose, describing Jane’s every emotion and movement as she ‘rushed to the door and shook the lock in desperate effort’. This extensive use of detail renders even the most Gothic elements of the text realistic.

The events that take place within the Red Room are highly relevant to the structure of ‘Jane Eyre’ as a whole. Several themes, such as those of gender oppression and the Gothic, are first used within this extract and then continue to recur throughout the novel. The Red Room’s importance as a symbol also continues throughout, and every time Jane experiences fear or humiliation her mind returns to her memory of the horror and ridicule she encountered that afternoon. Many of the Gothic images described in this passage foreshadow future Gothic themes within the plot, and the elaborate Gothic imagery reappears frequently throughout. The extract also provides the reader with an extensive insight into Jane’s personality by demonstrating the presence of her easily provoked superstitious and passionate nature.

Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason from “Jane Eyre”

I bent forward: first surprise, then bewilderment, came over methis was not Sophie, it was not Leah The shape standing before me had never crossed my eyes within the precincts of Thornfield Hall beforeIts seemed, sir, a woman, tall and largeIt was a discoloured face—it was a savage face. I wish I could forget the roll of the red eyesthe lips were swelled and darkShall I tell you of what it reminded me? …the vampire. If a person were to read this quote for the first time, his instinct would be of a stereotypical mystery or even horror book.

But in fact, this comes from Jane Eyre written by Charlotte Bronte, with a plot nothing like what one might think from this passage. This shows that no matter what the plot of story is; in this case two peoples journey to find love, there is some mystery that keeps the reader guessing.

Jane experiences several of Berthas crazy escapes from the attic, but is completely unaware of who or what she is.

This lack of knowledge of Janes brings in a sense of suspense and terror to the plot. Without this fear that Berthas character creates in Janes life, the story would just be another tale of love. Jane becomes more curious about the mystery hidden deep in Thornfield Hall and begins to think the person causing the mayhem is Grace Poole. The dread of Bertha produces a dark cloud over Thornfield, symbolizing the secrets kept by its residents, specifically Mr. Rochester.

Bertha is a metaphor for Janes subconscious feeling of rage. Jane loves Rochester, but she still fears the binds that the marriage will bring. Jane never acts out on this anger or fear, but Bertha does. Bertha ripping Janes wedding veil symbolizes a secret feeling of Janes that the marriage should not go on. Jane leaves Thornfield, feeling it is now a place of imprisonment or inferiority. While she is away, Bertha burns down Thornfield, expressing what Jane could only feel and not carry out. Bertha is also an antithesis with Jane. They are compared to show the contrast of both. Before the reader even know who Bertha is, it is clear the she has savage-like qualities that bring out Janes righteousness and kindness. This gives the reader more understanding into Janes character.

As the story continues and Rochesters past containing Bertha is identified, similarities between Jane and Bertha are observed. They are both symbols of the socially imprisoned Victorian women. One example is their unattractiveness in the Victorian era. Bertha becomes ugly from her insanity, showing that women, including Jane, were somehow confined due to their lack of beauty. The presence of Bertha Mason in the plot strengthens the readers desire to keep reading and discover who the vampire is. Berthas mystery also strengthens Janes and Rochesters relationship and creates a perfect climax to one of the most read stories of the nineteenth century.

Essay on Jane Eyre’s character

From her troubles with the abusive Reed family, her friendships at Lowood, her love of Mr Rochester and her time with the Rivers household, Jane’s character stays strong and alert regardless of the challenges she withstands. Through the course of the unique, Jane’s character modifications somewhat however additionally strengthens itself as Jane uses people, circumstances and her individual experiences to acquire understanding, and help her gaining her full character.

From when she was a child, Jane had forthright values of herself and an example is when she reprimanded John Reed for attacking her with a book, Wicked and cruel boy! I said.

You are like a murderer you resemble a slave motorist You resemble the Roman emperors! She was exiled and pushed away by the Reed family, developing an extremely independent spiritHer character is more fast to concise and creative whilst also being observant. I was a discord in Gateshead Hall. I resembled nobody there; I had nothing in harmony with Mrs Reed or her kids or her chosen vassalage.

She understood that the Reed household strongly dislike her and the factor behind it. Justice and principle was also apparently very essential to her then.

At Lowood School, there was a harsh and stringent environment but the environment was alleviated for Jane by friends such as Helen and Miss Temple who treated her with regard and care. Miss Temple is explained by Helen as Miss Temple is excellent, and very smart; she is above the rest because she understands even more than they do. This is likewise the method that Jane feels about Miss Temple due to her understanding of the kids’s feelings and requirements. This was contrasted with Mr Brocklehurst who was a hypocrite and dealt with Jane and the rest of the trainees with contempt. Jane ended up being to understand of the many various kinds of people with various characters who would come into her life.

She rejects the extremist model of Helen’s character but uses it to become more understanding as she learned to balance conflicting aspects throughout the rest of the novel. It is far better to endure patiently a smart which nobody feels but yourself, than to commit a hasty action whose evil actions will extend to all connected to you.. Helen believes in strongly enduring the pain and from Jane’s rebellious and angry spirit, a development of understanding and endurance contrives. Although Jane is changed, she never really accepted the full model of Helen and still believed in justice and principle.

Jane’s character was afraid of rejection, as so had been done throughout her previous years with the Reed family. Mr Rochester’s proposal had been as stepping-stone for her to overcome the troubles she carried in her past. Mr Rochester was Helen’s first love yet her character hindered her from dependency. She merely wanted freedom and independency in a form where she would be able to love as well as find a balance between her values.

Leaving Thornfield was her search for the independency and freedom that she needed to have as part of her character and Jane here struggled hard with her love and need for independency after discovering Mr Rochester’s previous wife. But then a voice revered me that I could do it; and foretold that I should do it. I wrestled with my own resolution… Jane wants to be weak and just love Mr Rochester and be with him yet her character was strong, leading her away from Thornfield and into a whole new perspective of the world. Penniless and hungry, Jane is forced to sleep outdoors and beg for food and this shows how her sense of autonomy is so much ardent than her sense of pride.

To find that the Rivers family were cousin related to her; This was a blessing , bright, vivid and exhilarating; not like the ponderous gift of gold. Jane was overjoyed to find that she had family whom she loved and she valued this over the inheritance that she was given. Another part of the love she had been searching for had been fulfilled and through this, Jane’s character’s became more loving and was ready to let go of some of the self-sufficiency she valued so much.

As she did to Helen, Jane rejects the extremist model of St John although she still respected him and the freedom that he had offered were still not suited to her needs for self reliance. She knew there was no love or passion between her and St John therefore would not go as his wife, showing that love was still important in her character. This triggered the need to go see Mr Rochester, and finding him dependent of her believed that this was the solution and happiness she had been searching for.

The development of Jane Eyre’s character is central to the novel and as she keeps escaping the surroundings and people around her to find the balance of freedom and love that her character values. Through situations, Jane remains vigilant in character and it develops from a rebellious orphan to a mature independent woman so that she eventually finds contentment.

Bibliography:

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

The Red-room in Jane Eyre

It is not rare to encounter effective and incisive uses of space within nineteenth century literature. The famous novel _Jane Eyre_ by Charlotte Brontë is one of the finest examples of a fictional work with profuse uses of space in the period. The red-room in which the little Jane Eyre is locked as a punishment for her panicky defense of herself against her cousin John Reed is the first noteworthy use of space in the novel. Not only does it signify to the reader it is a Gothic novel they are reading but the room serves as a symbol for a number of meanings as well.

Charlotte Brontë introduces the room – “one of the largest and stateliest chambers in the mansion” – to her readers with a Gothic painted picture (13). One would need to make little effort to understand why this room is called “the red-room.” Inside the room are various nuances of the red color and of some other hot colors.

It has “a bed supported on massive pillars of mahogany, hung with curtains of deep red damask,” which stood out “like a tabernacle?in the centre” (13). Aside from a table at the food of the bed “covered with a crimson cloth,” the toilet-table and chairs are made of “darkly polished old mahogany” (13). More interestingly, the room is also carpeted in red.

In addition, “the two large windows, with their blinds always drawn?down, were half shrouded in festoons and falls of similar drapery,” and “the walls were a soft fawn colour with a blush?of pink in it” (13). That Jane’s uncle Reed spent the last minutes of his life in the room, along with the fact that the place is chilly, remote, quiet, and seldom entered, adds up to its internal atmospheric horror and mystery: “a sense of dreary?consecration had guarded it from frequent intrusion” (14).

Apart from all the red colors were the piled-up mattresses and pillows of?the bed, which “rose high,” “glared white,” and being “spread with a snowy Marseilles counterpane” (13). Scarcely less?prominent was an ample cushioned easy-chair near the head of the?bed, also white” (13). The little existence of white in this hell-resembled red place may be a metaphor for the being of the little Jane Eyre under the cruel treatment of her aunt and her cousins at Gateshead. It may, as well, be a metaphor for what happens within her mind as the innocent part of it, like that of any other ten year old child, is facing her increasing irritation, nervousness, and terror inside the room.

No sooner has she moved across the looking glass than she pays attention to a “strange little figure” gazing at her “with a white face and arms?specking the gloom, and glittering eyes of fear moving where all?else was still,” as well as “the depth it revealed” (14). Perceiving herself in the mirror to be a spirit “half fairy” and “half imp,” she saw a combination of perceptions in which the former is how she perceives herself to be, and the latter is how a troublesome child she is as perceived by others (14).

Thus, this represents the very beginning of Jane’s self-characterization as an independent woman since her perception of herself seems to be so vulnerable in front of others’ that she sees such a combination of perceptions. She is in the process of internally struggling to be her true person, trying not to succumb to her negative and disturbed thoughts. By stemming a “rapid rush of retrospective thought” before being swallowed by “the?dismal present,” she is establishing her own identity as well as dignity (14). Therefore, the room also resembles the hardship Jane must defeat in order to maintain and develop her own liberty as well as integrity.

The longer Jane is imprisoned in the red-room, disturbed feelings and thoughts seem to take over her mind more and more. She keeps thinking of herself as a “revolted slave,” unjustly punished and thus isolated as “a discord in the family” (15). Her confined position at Gateshead has become clear to her. Her head is full of questions she asks herself such as “Why was I always suffering, always browbeaten, always?accused, for ever condemned? Why could I never please? Why was it?useless to try to win any one’s favour?” (14)

She then switches her thoughts to her deceased uncle. She imagines Mr. Reed, the brother of her own mother, to whom he promised to look after Jane after her mother passed away, would have never maltreated her. She continues to think that her uncle may find her current mistreatment unacceptable and would want to appear to avenge her. At this point, she believes in the presence of his spirit in the room, and screams.

Bessie and Abbot then open the room. Jane begs them not to leave her in the room alone with the ghost, but Mrs. Reed claims that Jane just wants to trick them into releasing her. Eventually, Jane faints and falls into unconsciousness. From that point on, although she is released afterwards, she still is stuck in financial deficiency, excluded from society, and distanced from love. Whenever her integrity is challenged later, readers know that she will unavoidably think back to the red-room as a symbol of her long lasting suffering.

Another possible essence of the red room may be a connection between Jane and the character Bertha Mason later on in the novel. If Jane is imprisoned in the red-room, Bertha is locked in Rochester’s attic. Both of them are kept utterly isolated from the outside world. However, whereas Jane is a sane individual who generates rational thoughts when being imprisoned, Bertha is an uncontrollably mad woman. Still, due to the passion and rebellion that they both possess, readers may still somehow sympathize with Bertha.

In a word, the red-room is among many profound uses of space in Charlotte Brontë’s _Jane Eyre_. The room is the first obvious Gothic picture painted in the novel with a sense of consternation and mystery. Also, it resembles the feelings of fear and insecurities of the heroine not only within the chapter but also through later events in the story. It is a prison of her independence and identity formed by both the external hardships the society around her puts upon her and her negative feelings as reactions to those hardships. Only after breaking all such restraints can Jane achieve her complete confidence and happiness.

Work cited:

Brontë, Charlotte. _Jane Eyre_. 1847. Introd. Mark, Schorer. New York: New York UP, 1977. Print.

Feminism in Jane Eyre

Abstract: Charlotte Bronte’ masterpiece Jane Eyre symbolized a new era in the history of literature. It awakened women’s awareness to be independent. It brought about a completely new concept of marriage and of the value of life to a woman. That is marriage should base on true love, equality and respect rather than social ranks, materials or appearance. Marriage should be the combination of souls as well as bodies.

The heroine of the novel Jane Eyre has successfully demonstrated the image of a woman who is intelligent, independent, kind-hearted and most importantly, brave enough to say “no” to the social conventions and live up to her principle in life.

The author Charlotte Bronte is acclaimed to be a pioneer in the campaign of feminism. This essay is to explore and appreciate the spirits of feminism reflected in this novel and also reveal the limitations in demonstrating the concept of feminism. Key Words: Jane Eyre, feminism, limitations ?. Introduction:

In the 19th century, women were considered to be appendages to men.

Marriage and family life were the whole world to women. Women depended upon men physically, financially and spiritually. This essay is to explore and appreciate the spirits of feminism reflected in this novel Jane Eyre, whose author took the lead in the campaign of feminism. There are three parts in the process of demonstration. The first part is about the oppression laid by the four main men characters on Jane. The second part is about three main women characters and their images in this novel.

The last part is to point out some limitations of the author when illustrating feminism. ?. Body 1. Men’s oppression upon women The novel was written in the early 19th century when men played a dominant role in society. Women were considered to be inferior to men. All that women were supposed to do was follow the instructions of men and be the subsidiary addition to men’s life. Four men in Jane’s life had laid oppression on her in different degrees. Jane survives the oppression and led herself constantly to her own desirable life. 1. The oppression from John Reed

The first male character to oppress Jane was her cousin John Reed, who in part made little Jane live in shadow and fears when she was only a young girl. The boy hit Jane whenever he felt like only because Jane was an orphan. Poor little Jane could do nothing but bear the hurts both physically and spiritually. At last, Jane’s feelings of hatred and indignity went out of control. For the first time, Jane stood up and fought back when John hit her again. Her cry of “ Wicked boy” at John declares her determination to fight against this unfair world.

This quarrel and fight led to her life in Lowood in which she felt much happier. 2. The oppression from Mr. Brocklehurst Mr. Brocklehurst represents those who had firm belief in women-inferiority theory. He demanded the girls in Lowood to wear ugly or even broken clothes, eat far-from-enough harsh food and led a hard life. In his opinion, girls should lead a simple life in order to cultivate the virtue of subordination and dependence. He once insulted Jane in front of Jane’s teachers and classmates. He claimed Jane to be a wicked girl only because Mrs. Reed, Jane’s Aunt, told him so.

Though depressed and heart-broken, Jane finally showed with her own deeds to her teachers and classmates that she was not a wicked girl as Mr. Brocklehurst claimed. 3. The oppression from Edward Rochester Even Edward Rochester, Jane’s lover, wanted to lay some oppression or control upon Jane. Before their marriage, he wanted to use the necklace to circle up the thoughts and feelings of Jane. He wanted the ring to restrict Jane’s actions. Further, he wanted the beautiful wedding dress to change Jane’s appearance a little bit. Though at first, out of the love for Mr. Rochester, Jane intended to give in, but in the end she refused all of them.

She just wanted to act what Jane was like and preserve her own unique characteristics. 4. The oppression from St. John St. John hold absolute faith in the social convention that a woman’s value was realized only when she devoted her life to a man. He took it for granted that it was the privilege and honor of Jane to go to India with him and help his work as his wife. He thought Jane would agree with him at last because it was what a good woman should be like. Jane firmly declined this idea because she wanted a marriage based on true love and mutual understandings. 2. The image of women characters

The heroine of the novel Jane Eyre has undoubtedly succeeded in building up the image of a woman who has the courage to fight against the unfair reality and pursue the equality in life. She calls for women to struggle for and be the mastery of their own lives. During the whole story, Jane serves as a positive character. By the development of Jane’s thoughts and feelings, the author conveys the spirits of feminism. Miss Blanch Ingram serves as a contract character against Jane. She represents the typical girls from noble families in that time. All she wanted was to find a rich man to depend on and get married with him.

In her opinion, a woman’s duty was to make her appearance attractive and beautiful in order to win the heart of a rich man. Marriage should base on social ranks and money only and husbands and children are the whole world for a woman. Her rude behaviors and contempt upon “ordinary” people have fully illustrated her lack of cultivation and education. The image of Miss Blanch Ingram also symbolized the women victims of the social conventions. They lost their soul or even lost control of their bodies and they didn’t have the slightest idea of the value of a woman’s life. hey lived and were quite willing to live as the belongs of men.

The mad women living on the 3rd floor arouses readers’ suspicion and speed up the development of the plot. In addition, she helped to turn on a new page of Jane’s life (Rosemarie Putnam Tong, 1998). Because of the terrible set by the mad woman, the Thornfield was reduced to ashes and Mr. Rochester became blind and lost one arm. Everything in the past had become history and a new chapter in Jane’s life had opened. In Ferndean Manor, a quiet and peaceful place, Jane and her beloved Mr.

Rochester began to lead a new life in which Jane was no longer inferior to him and Jane’s stature has changed because she was rich thanks to the heritage from her dead uncle. 3. The limitations in demonstrating Feminism It’s beyond any doubt that Charlotte Bronte has brought about the idea of feminism in this novel but she failed to demonstrate the concept perfectly. The spirits of feminism are supposed to advocate equality between men and women (Rosemarie Putnam Tong, 1998). The reason why the author failed is she demonstrated the concept of “equality” partially. In the relationship between Jane and Mr.

Rochester, Jane was a relatively stronger character. At the first time they met, Jane helped the injured Mr. Rochester and at the end of the novel, Jane helped Mr. Rochester to deal with his daily life because of his blindness and disability. Furthermore, Jane was rich while Mr. Rochester turned poor, old and ugly. The author seems to arrange their marriage in this kind of condition on purpose. In Jane’s preparation for her marriage when she was still a governess in Thornfield, she refused all the jewelry or beautiful dresses Mr. Rochester had prepared for her. She didn’t want to be changed into another woman.

The very reason for this kind of feelings and was Her refusal of the offer is due to her strong sense of inferiority. She was poor and her social status was low at that time. The author didn’t’ arrange Jane’s marriage in the condition. Instead, Jane got married with Mr. Rochester when she was rich and Mr. Rochester was poor due to the big fire. Only in this circumstance, Jane was willing enough to marry Mr. Rochester because “I love you better now, when I can really be useful to you, than I did in your state of proud independence, when you disdained every part but that of the giver and protector” (Charlotte Bronte, 1975:451).

Jane’s marriage was in fact based on a kind of incompleteness and inequality at least in terms of the couple’s physical conditions and social status. Charlotte subtly conveys the idea that feminism can be realized only in an incomplete marriage. The readers would be a little distressed when intelligent, kind-hearted and independent Jane gained her happiness in this way. The concept of feminism the author conveys to some extent goes to extremes. ? Conclusion The novel Jane Eyre successfully constituted an intelligent, kind-hearted and independent woman image.

It arouses people’s awareness of feminism. The four men characters’ oppression upon the heroine Jane reveals the low social status of women in that period of time. The three women images in the novel represent different thoughts or ideas among women in that age. The novel serves as a pioneer in the cause of women’s liberation though it fails to convey the concept of “ feminism” to the fullest extent because it fails due to its failure to balance the equality between men and women.

Symbolism in Jane Eyre

In the classic novel, Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte tells the story of an orphaned governess and her romance with Edward Rochester. As Bronte develops the plot, she subtly uses symbolism to represent ideas. Throughout the book, Bronte includes objects and events that symbolize a deeper concept. Symbolism is a key literary device when Bronte describes the relationship between Mr. Rochester and Jane. In one instance, the chestnut tree under which Mr.

Rochester proposed is struck by lightning. “I faced the wreck of the chestnut-tree … split down the centre … The cloven halves were not broken from each other … the firm base and strong roots kept them unsundered below … they might be said to form one tree–a ruin, but an entire ruin” (282).

The wording could easily be overlooked, however, the tree represents the idea that the relationship between Jane and Mr. Rochester will suffer damage, yet remain intact.

Likewise, the circumstance involving Bertha Mason tearing the bridal veil in the middle of the night symbolizes an idea.

“It removed my veil … rent it in two parts … flinging both on the floor, trampled on them” (290). The veil, symbolizing Jane’s marriage, is torn in two, just as Jane’s marriage will also be cruelly ripped apart. Together, Bronte uses these two symbols as representations of the destruction soon to occur in Jane’s love life.

Bronte also applies symbolism to reveal the characters of Jane’s two love interests, Mr. Rochester and St. John Rivers. When referring to Mr. Rochester, the author uses terms relating to fire, such as when Rochester tries to win back Jane. “He seemed to devour me with his flaming glance … powerless as stubble exposed to the draught and glow of a furnace” (325). Thus, Mr. Rochester is a fiery character, and fire is his symbol. In contrast, Bronte describes St. John Rivers with icy terms.

For example, when Jane is telling Rochester of Rivers’ flaws, she describes it this way: “He is good and great, but severe; and, for me, cold as an iceberg” (457). St. John Rivers is therefore represented by ice. These two symbols are used throughout the book. All in all, symbolism plays a role in developing the plot of Jane Eyre. It leads to foreshadowing, to contrast, and to characterization. Without symbols, the storyline would not be as vividly presented to the reader. Charlotte Bronte’s symbolism certainly adds depth to her impressive novel.

Feminism & Postcolonialism in Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre

As a representative work of a female author who was well ahead of her times, Jane Eyre can safely be concerned as the magnum opus of Charlotte Bronte. A literary career that covered for a meager 6 years, it was actually extraordinary regarding how Charlotte Bronte could stand out even an author so as to have the ability to pen down the account of a lonely and principled female who has actually given that been looked up as the very epitome of womanhood, not to mention the politic of feminism.

Additionally, elements of postcolonialism and their influence on specific behavior can also be traced in the polarized character sketching of Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason.

In modern literature, gender and postcolonial discourses do not seem to rest exclusively on any stereotypical convention of characterization. Rather, such techniques tend to de-categorize women according to their individual identity. Simply put, a female character in today’s literature would rather have irregular personalities, rather than having lofty and focused suitables.

What makes Jane Eyre a real review of postcolonial and feminist literature is its assimilation of the inconsistent characteristics of womanhood– good and bad, sophistication and vileness, civility and impudence– within a single narrative framework.

In the light of this observation, this paper attempts to validate Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre as a fictional illustration of feminism and postcolonialism. To validate the thesis, the paper will check out chapters 26 and 27– a transitory stage in the story of Jane Eyre. Many of Charlotte Bronte’s books, consisting of Shirley (1849) and Villette (1853 ), handle a brilliant image of colonial Europe and document how social conventions are shaped and redressed by colonial hostilities. At the end of chapter 26 of Jane Eyre, Mr.

Rochester asks Jane to accompany him to France– a place not colonized by Great Britain. This shows how the principles of meta-colonization were imbued in the author’s mind while composing the book. What it likewise brings out is how the male lead characters of Bronte, while many of whom have a sardonic and bipolar mindset to romantic relationships, inevitably choose ladies having an unique colonial background in order to dismiss the possibility of a foreign intrusion into their hardnosed Victorian veils.

Meyer points out that there is a fusion of postcolonial societal doctrines and racial synthesis in the way Bronte treats her women characters in Emma (1853) and Jane Eyre. This hints at a dichotomy of social prejudices regarding how a common European would respond to the color of human skin on one hand, and how it would be treated as a benchmark for social permissibility. The paradigm of postcolonialism is embedded at the heart of the novel when Mrs.

Reed grows an aversion to little Jane on the ground of her ethnic background, alien to the former’s own (249). Meyer further discusses the literary tropes Bronte uses in Jane Eyre to signify race relations prevalent in contemporary English societies. Bronte, according to Meyer, uses the concept of blackness in a figurative way to connect the actual history of British colonization with racial “otherness”. This psychological practice of attributing “otherness” to was a result of a colonizer’s preoccupation with Whiteness.

There is a paradigmatic shift from literature to life, however, in the way Bronte pinpoints the presence of both class and race discrimination in the British society. She does this to unmask the patriarchal impositions that were central to the overall aura of dominance practiced by the British over their colonies. The politics of feminism in Jane Eyre is quite complex in nature, simply because a number of related factors are interwoven in the plot. Quoting Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Meyer argues that Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason represent two distinct leagues of feminism.

While Jane is a sober and progressive woman capable of bettering her situation on her own accord, Bertha Mason is a compulsive character, almost an obstacle character, lying beyond the scope of self-improvement or redemption. Bertha Mason is a representative of the aboriginal race, precariously positioned between human and bestial instincts. In dealing with the development of a meaningful character, Bertha Mason is deliberately stripped of the very qualities that are bestowed to Jane Eyre. Consequently, Jane grows to be the epitome of womanhood with all her feminine virtues (250).

But Meyer does not take Spivak’s argument at face value. She further questions the validity of the claim that Spivak makes about the correlation between feminism and imperialism in Jane Eyre. If imperialism can be cited as a tentative offshoot of postcolonialism, it would be easier to substantiate the thesis. From imperialistic perspectives, Bertha Mason qualifies as a colonial woman who is supposed to have an individualistic entity of her own. But then again she is also portrayed as a native woman, which seems to obfuscate the earlier attribution to imperialism.

Going by Meyer’s argument, it is clear that traits of both imperialism and postcolonialism cannot coexist within a single character, and if it does, one must remain dormant for the other to thrive (250-1). Hence, it is logically better to link patriarchy with colonial dominance, as both have their origins rooted in the nineteenth century British high-bloodedness that had historically been proved to be discriminating on gender issues. Rositsa Kronast examines Bronte’s introduction of the “female colonial Other” in the context of a male dominated regime.

Citing Jane Eyre as her principle reference, along with Jean Rhys’ Wide Sargasso Sea, Kronast shows how the tables can turn with changes in power and hierarchy. It may be noted, however, that this change may or may not come from internal agents. As is the case with Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason, the change is imposed by the Victorian norms that were outright puritanical. Consequently, Jane, despite being a woman of substance, is pitted against seemingly insolvable situations especially when her love affair with Mr.

Rochester comes under serious threat from Bertha Mason. While Jane is drained of her power, Bertha Mason steps in as an empowered woman, capable of inflicting great damage at a public level. The reversal of fortune is only possible because the Victorian times in colonial England allowed for total submission of women before male whims. The Victorian concept of womanhood that Jane embodies is based on relative compatibility with men. Women were seen to be playing second fiddles to their gender counterparts in a number of roles – from mother to wife (3).

What is interesting to note from Kronast’s argument is that if Jane is the Other woman, she is at once powerless and empowered. This brings us to the same logical fallacy that has been mentioned earlier in the paper – two contradictory traits cannot control a character’s life in any way. So to put matters in the right context, it is reasonable to infer that the Creole woman portrayed by Bertha Mason must give in to the author’s intention of representing the colonized face of womanhood, in order to accommodate for a lofty and ideal feminine role for the individualistic Jane (Staines 42).

In essence, reading into the feministic and postcolonial components in Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre brings out the difference between what is intrinsically feminine and what is not. It is basically a novel based on modern concepts of feminism. Jane’s personality exudes a rich ardor of feminine grace and beauty. Postcolonialism, on the other hand, is only introduced for putting the concept of feminism into perspective. Therefore, Jane and Bertha continue to hold their respective positions of significance, with the latter playing the role of a borderline character.

Works Cited Kronast, Rositsa. The Creole Woman and the Problem of Agency in Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre” and Jean Rhys’s “Wide Sargasso Sea”. Munich: GRIN Verlag, 2010. Meyer, Susan L. “Colonialism and the Figurative Strategy of Jane Eyre. ” Victorian Studies. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1990. Staines, David. Margaret Laurence: critical reflections. Ottawa, Ontario: University of Ottawa Press, 2001.