The Victorian era in England marked a period of unprecedented technological, scientific, political, and economic advancement. By the 1840s, the English had witnessed remarkable industrial achievements including the advent of the railways and the photographic negative. They had witnessed the expansion of the Empire, and, as a result, were living in a time of great economic stability. Yet they had also seen thousands of people starving-and dying-due to the Irish potato famine and poor conditions and benefits in British factories and witnessed the entire order of society questioned as the working classes began to demand representation in Parliament. The English also experienced biological
Many people will not stand up against oppression, but the few who do can change everything for the better. Many characters in literature and life conform to oppressive ideas like sheep led by a farmer, but Jane Eyre is the exception, and unlike the rest she is willing to stand up and voice her opinions. In the novel Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte uses figurative language, diction and metaphor to illuminate the character of Jane through a feminist lens, and although Jane is limited by the roles placed upon women in Victorian society, she fulfills her ambition to transcend all that stands in her way and manages to reach her aspiration in life and rise in the class system of the Victorian society.
Bronte’s Jane Eyre gave a voice to women in the Victorian era. Bronte embedded her feminist ideas into her novel, Jane Eyre. Her belief in marrying for love was a head of her time. Bronte used Jane to explore the depth at which women could act in society. Her ideas on women being more educated brought on thoughts of equality of a different level.
Throughout Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë uses the character Jane as a tool to comment on the oppression that women were forced to endure at the time. Jane can be seen as representative of the women who suffered from repression during the Victorian period, a time when patriarchy was commonplace. Brontë herself was affected by the time period, because according to Wolfe, she was deprived “experience and intercourse and travel.” (70) Thus Jane offers a unique perspective as a woman who is both keenly aware of her position and yet trapped by it despite repeated attempts to elevate herself and escape the burden placed on by her different suitors. Although superficially it seems that Jane wants to break away from the relationships that further
The novel Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte tells the story of an abused orphan, Jane, who later matures into a confident, self-reliant governess. Bronte uses conflict, irony, and symbols to display how Jane matures. The most dominant themes of Jane Eyre are social position, feminism, and overcoming difficult situations. Jane is an unwavering force, symbolizing in many ways the life of Charlotte Bronte. Jane struggles to find a balance between independence, friendship, and love throughout the novel.
In Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre, Jane is an orphan who is often mistreated by the family and other people who surround her. Faced with constant abuse from her aunt and her cousins, Jane at a young age questions the treatment she receives: "All John Reed’s violent tyrannies, all his sister’s proud indifference, all his mother’s aversion, all the servants’ partiality, turned up in my disturbed mind like a dark deposit in a turbid well. Why was I always suffering, always brow-beaten, always accused, forever condemned?" (27; ch. 2). Despite her early suffering, as the novel progresses Jane is cared for and surrounded by various women who act as a sort of "substitute mother" in the way they guide,
Throughout the novel, Bronte recognizes both the male and the female as equivalent in terms of what is needed to establish true bonds in relationships. By refusing to accept the idea of marriageability and suitability, she has denied society’s objectification of women. Bronte exemplifies that love should be the true bond that individuals should strive to discovery. Through Jane’s behaviors power cannot be given to her male counterpart Rochester. Instead a balance of power is formed. Consequently, through Jane’s need to be seen and appreciated as an equal the torment that she endures strengthens her character and allows her to become an independent woman versus the naivety that is seen in women conforming to social requirements. Rochester tries
Throughout the book, Jane endures both physical and mental abuse from multiple individuals; however, she defies them by fighting back in her own way. The abuse starts at Gateshead when her older cousin, John Reed, verbally and physically assaults Jane. Brontë writes on page 12, “He bullied and punished me; not two or three times in the week, nor once or twice in a day, but continually: every nerve I had feared him, and every morsel of flesh on my bones shrank when he came near.” Jane consciously chooses to defend herself after John strikes her on page 13 and 14, “I wonder if he read that notion in my face; for, all at once, without speaking, he struck suddenly and strongly. I tottered, and on regaining my equilibrium retired back a step or two from his chair…I don’t very well know what I did with my hands, but he called me…” Jane defies John’s authority as the man of the house by fighting back when he abuses her. By doing this, Jane breaks the typical Victorian gender-based ideal that a woman must obey and be complacent to the directive of any man in a higher position than her (Olga Zeltzer, Historical Analysis: Women as the "the Sex" During the Victorian Era). Jane’s actions,
Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre is presented in the Victorian Period of England. It is a novel which tells the story of a child's maturation into adulthood. Jane's developing personality has been shaped by her rough childhood. She has been influenced by many people and experiences. As a woman of her time, Jane has had to deal with the strain of physical appearance. This has a great effect on her mental thinking and decision making. Jane Eyre's cognitive and physical attributes have been affected by her environment throughout her life.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë depicts the rigid social structure and clear division between the upper and lower classes of Victorian society, in which wealth and status determined one’s beliefs, career, and treatment from those surrounding them. Those of the upper class did not typically converse or involve themselves with those viewed as beneath them; however, Jane Eyre fights the separation between the classes to which she has fallen victim at both Gateshead and Lowood school. Her refusal to conform to the hierarchy eventually leads to the meddling between the Victorian-era elite and peasant class, as seen through Jane Eyre’s romantic relationship with Edward Rochester, an upperclassman and
The first point to be discussed with feminism in this literature, Brontë portrays Jane Eyre to be a very subtle Feminist. Jane's approach to feminism is not rebellious or outlandish at all. She lets her character speak for itself, .due to her harsh living environments she had to take that approach considering in the nineteenth-century, the quality of life as a women was entirely based on how beautiful women were and who they were married to. Along with a wealthy economic status, Jane however, had none of these things going for her. For example she was an orphan in this particular family named the Reeds, they are a very wealthy family and took her into an extremely toxic household which was very different to her past living environments, were later on corrupted her in the future to believe that all women should not be treated equal to but less than when compared to men. From the disrespect she received from Mrs Reed, and the bullying from her son John she was always able to stand up for herself no matter how bad or unfairly she was being treated. There were many instances were Jane was being treated unjustly. Ms. Reed would allow her children and even the maid of the house be disrespectful to her. Everyday Jane was being being compared to things like “little toad” (bronte 41). Conveying the message to the reader that just because Jane is not attractive nor wealthy that she does not deserve to be given the respect someone with those
Charlotte Bronte created one of the first feminist novels--Jane Eyre--of her time period when she created the unique and feminist female heroine, Jane Eyre. Throughout the novel, Jane becomes stronger as she speaks out against antagonists. She presses to find happiness whether she is single or married and disregards society’s rules. The novel begins as Jane is a small, orphan child living with her aunt and cousins due to the death of her parents and her uncle. Jane 's aunt--Mrs. Reed--degrades her as she favors her biological children. Jane 's aunt--Mrs. Reed--degrades her as she favors her biological children. Her cousin--John Reed--hits her and then Mrs. Reed chooses to punish her instead and sends her to the room in which her uncle
Jane Eyre, a novel by Charlotte Brontë, contains several notable themes and messages sent to its readers. Jane Eyre is a coming of age novel that is a story of a girl's quest for equality and happiness. A common theme that recurs throughout the novel is the importance of independence.Charlotte Brontë utilizes several techniques to convey this message, incorporating her personal experiences, as well as including symbolism and motifs. Charlotte Bronte subjects Jane to several conflicts that occur because of Jane’s desire for independence and freedom, such as love, religion, and gender inequality.
In Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, societal prejudices are used to expose the social boundaries set by Victorian Society which confine Jane within a standard, causing her to push set societal boundaries, which combine to reveal her nature as a character.
The nineteenth century Victorian era woman needed wealth or position to avoid a life of drudgery. Women were viewed as trophies or possessions men owned. They were not permitted to develop nor expected to, and even venturing out on their own was considered inappropriate. During the era in which Jane Eyre was published the home and family were seen as the basic unit of stability in society. At the middle of this foundation stood a wife and mother representing the sum total of all morality - a Madonna-like image. This image was reinforced by social institutions such as mainstream religious and political beliefs. Women were steered away from independence, confidence, and