How does Emily Bronte use Gothic elements to enhance the novel ‘Wuthering Heights’? Discuss how Daphne Du Maurier’s ‘Jamaica Inn’ illuminates this.

2086 WordsNov 28, 20139 Pages
How does Emily Bronte use Gothic elements to enhance the novel ‘Wuthering Heights’? Discuss how Daphne Du Maurier’s ‘Jamaica Inn’ illuminates this. In the Victorian era we saw the revival of gothic literature; it fictionalised contemporary fears such as ethical degeneration, unmediated spiritual beliefs against a stern religious faith and also questioned the social structure of the time. Although written almost 100 years apart both Wuthering Heights and Jamaica Inn share many themes and components. Both novels thoroughly enhance the Gothic genre and contain many of the key elements you would expect. In Victorian Britain Gothic literature contained many features of the supernatural, both psychological and physical, such as; mystery,…show more content…
Furthermore, Hindley’s violence in this chapter foreshadows Heathcliff’s violence later in the novel. Hindley was always cruel to Heathcliff out of jealousy – his father preferred Heathcliff to him – but it seems that Hindley’s later cruelty is a result of the loss of his wife, Francis, as Heathcliff’s is to the loss of his love, Catherine. The structure of Wuthering Heights is typical of the Gothic genre, the use of the literary technique ‘doubles’ whereby characters often have a ‘pair’ who has similar characteristics or experiences similar events is incorporated by Bronte and a repetitious structure is also integrated. Examples of doubles in Wuthering Heights would be Mr Earnshaw’s neglect of Hindley as a child and Hindley’s neglect of Hareton; the pampered, naive nature of both Lockwood and Linton. The Catherine’s shared name and the death of both Catherine and her mother in child birth – this also links to hereditary curses which is a recurring theme of Gothic literature. The recurring events are surely symbolic of the continuous suffering of the novel’s characters unless society changes, the suffering will continue. Bronte’s denouement is quite purposely ambiguous in order to allow the reader to question exactly whether this vicious cycle of suffering continues or if it is instead resolved by the union of Cathy and Hareton;

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