Wuthering Heights is a novel whose main character is said to have a double significance. He is said to be both the dispossessed and the dispossessor, victim of class hatred and arch – exploiter, he simultaneously occupies the roles of working class outsider and brutal capitalist. Heathcliff has all these characteristics because of his experiences. He is a character moulded by his past.
Bronte centres the novel on Heathcliff’s story. One of the first things Lockwood, the narrator, mentions is how he beholds Heathcliff’s “black eyes withdraw so suspiciously under their brows”. Straight away the audience pick up on his mysteriousness as the gothic protagonist. The past is hidden deep inside the darkness of his eyes and is reflected in his physical appearance.
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte was published in 1847 and received many contradictory judgements. One main judgement that criticized the novel was how multiple characters can have a change in characterization depending on the reader. Many of the novel's characters, such as Heathcliff, possess positive values, but readers tend to focus on their negative qualities which allows these characters to change. Growing up poor and homeless, Heathcliff’s character changes many times throughout the novel as he grows older and possess negative qualities towards other characters. Later residing as an old, lonely master, Heathcliff’s change in character at the end of Wuthering Heights signifies that he has gone mad and leads to intentions that Heathcliff has not committed suicide, but lost all will after all he has been through.
Heathcliff was the primary character that drove the plot of Wuthering Heights. The novel began and ended with him and his vindictive actions are most important to the progression of the story. He was unique from the other characters in the way that he looked, with “black eyes [withdrawn] so suspiciously under their brows...[and] dirty, ragged, black hair” (Bronte 3, 37). Mr. Earnshaw had generously brought this gipsy boy when he returned from a trip, picking him up from the miserable factory towns occupied by the lower classes in 1840. Earnshaw’s family did not receive this boy well, so Heathcliff was often characterized as a demon, epitomizing the equivocal attitude of the upper class, who at times felt charitable to and at times afraid of the lower class.
This later Heathcliff is characterized by a coldness, by an incapacity to love and ultimately by consuming passion for revenge against those who have abused him. Just as he begins life, he ends life as an unloved, lonely outsider.
When one starts reading Wuthering heights I’m sure they think to themselves that the book will be just another romantic novel. They wait for Heathcliff to come around the whole story, and for him and Catherine to end up together, but it doesn’t happen. This causes Heathcliff to get progressively, more and more alienated by the people around him. He only wants what he can’t have and this is why he is referred to as a Byronic Hero. It is my intention to prove Heathcliff as a Byronic Hero by classifying him under the six attributes of the archetype.
Through the actions Heathcliff pursues throughout the entirety of the novel, it is furtively easy to only see him as a malicious brute. In retrospect, the further along one continues throughout the novel, the more it feels as if Bronte is encouraging readers to hate the protagonist; this, however, is not the case. This is evident from the commencement of the novel, through the author’s vivid depictions of the ways in which Heathcliff was brought upon society, starting from his introduction to the Earnshaws. “They entirely refused to have it (Heathcliff) in bed with them, or even in their room; and I had no more sense, so I put it on the landing of the stairs, hoping it might he gone on the morrow------This was Heathcliff's first introduction to the family” (Bronte 59).
The presentation of childhood is a theme that runs through two generations with the novel beginning to reveal the childhood of Catherine and Hindley Earnshaw, and with the arrival of the young Liverpudlian orphan, Heathcliff. In chapter four, Brontë presents Heathcliff’s bulling and abuse at the hands of Hindley as he grows increasingly jealous of Heathcliff for Mr. Earnshaw, his father, has favoured Heathcliff over his own son, “my arm, which is black to the shoulder” the pejorative modifier ‘black’ portrays dark and gothic associations but also shows the extent of the abuse that Heathcliff as a child suffered from his adopted brother. It is this abuse in childhood that shapes Heathcliff’s attitudes towards Hindley and his sadistic
In this chapter, we see that Catherine has changed drastically from being a wild savage to a young mannered lady. Shockingly, we can see the distinctive difference between Heathcliff and Catherine's character. They were once the same, but this chapter serves as the platform to highlight the contrasting differences between these lovers. On one hand, one can argue that it develops their relationship immensely.
In Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë, Heathcliff’s strong love for Catherine guides his transformation as a character. While Heathcliff enters the story as an innocent child, the abuse he receives at a young age and his heartbreak at Catherine’s choice to marry Edgar Linton bring about a change within him. Heathcliff’s adulthood is consequently marked by jealousy and greed due to his separation from Catherine, along with manipulation and a deep desire to seek revenge on Edgar. Although Heathcliff uses deceit and manipulation to his advantage throughout the novel, he is never entirely content in his current situation. As Heathcliff attempts to revenge Edgar Linton, he does not gain true fulfillment. Throughout Wuthering Heights, Brontë uses Heathcliff’s vengeful actions to convey the message that manipulative and revenge-seeking behaviors will not bring a person satisfaction.
Catherine returns to Wuthering Heights, she is barely recognizable. Hindley, treating Heathcliff as a servant, allows Catherine's playmate to step forward to greet her when she arrives. Catherine kisses Heathcliff, but while doing so, she comments upon his dirty appearance and compares him unfavorably to Edgar. Heathcliff is hurt by the changes in his friend's appearance and attitude.
Mr. Earnshaw found Heathcliff when he was young and living on his own in Liverpool. Heathcliff Is raised as a family member until Mr. Earnshaw’s death. Hindly makes Heathcliff live like a servant. As he matures he becomes infatuated and obsessed with Catharine. He and Catharine go on adventures and one-day end up watching the Linton’s at the grange. Attack dogs chase Cathy and Heathcliff until Cathy falls and is bitten by the dogs. While she is away Heathcliff tracks the days she is gone and puts a net over a nest of baby birds and starves them, this shows how obsessed and psychotic he is early in the movie.
Heathcliff started out as a young boy on the streets of Liverpool. He was a young gypsy that was very poor. He had absolutely nothing except for the clothes on his back. He was taken to Wurthering Heights by a man on a business trip. This man was Mr. Earnshaw. Mr. Earnshaw felt so sorry for the little boy, but when he returned home with the child his other two children, Catherine and Hindley, were very jealous. Eventually Catherine and Heathcliff became very fond of each other, but when Mr. Earnshaw passed away Hindley had all control. Hindley treated Heathcliff very poorly, and he finally had enough of Hindley demeaning him. Heathcliff fled from Wurthering Heights.
In the book Wuthering Heights many of the characters show signs of unjust Behavior towards one another and subordinate characters. These acts lead some of these characters to negatively change their Persona as they grow older into adulthood. When character who fits into these descriptions and experiences is mr. Heathcliff. Just for a quick term of reference, Heathcliff was adopted by a family. His adopted father cared for him more than his actual children. They grew jealous, and after their father died they tormented Heathcliff and treated him as a slave which cause Heathcliff to leave his home for three years and returned completely different. After his return, he began to take
The Development of Heathcliff’s Character in Wuthering Heights Heathcliff is a character who is ever present in “Wuthering Heights” and throughout the novel his character changes. At first he is a poor, homeless child, then he becomes a loved and neglected victim, then he is a degraded lover, and finally he transforms into a