Post Contains Spoilers
- The Unconventional Heroine Bronte could have written Jane as a typical heroine, beautiful and social with men fawning over her. However she has given us a more relatable heroine in Jane who is described as plain and not beautiful.
- Jane’s Strong Moral Compass Jane operates entirely under her own disciplines and decisions. She’s a strong willed character but not to the point of being unbelievable-she shows a degree of vulnerability that has us rooting for her throughout.”Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion”
- Edward Fairfax Rochester I love Mr Rochester and have done for a very long time – in fact at one point in recent years, I wanted to get a cat and name him Mr Rochester. If that’s not a sign of love then I don’t know what is. But I digress, I’m not even sure what it is that I like, perhaps the sullen countenance, perhaps the fact that he and Jane are considered equals when they plan to marry. Perhaps I was drawn by the fact that he was fatally flawed and I could see a flutter of vulnerability in his “stern features and heavy brow.” (also Michael Fassbender as Rochester..yes please)
- Jane finally revealing her feelings to Mr Rochester Well doesn’t this just hit you right in the feelings… “Do you think I am an automaton? — a machine without feelings? and can bear to have my morsel of bread snatched from my lips, and my drop of living water dashed from my cup? Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain, and little, I am soulless and heartless? You think wrong! — I have as much soul as you — and full as much heart! And if God had gifted me with some beauty and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you to leave me, as it is now for me to leave you. I am not talking to you now through the medium of custom, conventionalities, nor even of mortal flesh: 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” (sigh)
- Jane’s dedication to herself Throughout all that happens to Jane in the novel – abuse, friendship, death, loss, love, disappointment etc. etc.- she always stays loyal to her own ambitions and is never distracted from what she truly believes.
- Jane’s independence Along with my above point it is useful to discuss a well known character trait of Jane Eyre – her strength and independence. At a time when women were considered ‘hysterical’ and in every way inferior to men, this book comes so far ahead of its time. Jane’s main goal in this book is not to find a husband but to be independent. “I am no bird and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”
- Shock and scandal At a time where Male authors dominated and sensation fiction was becoming ever more popular, female authors started to become more and more well known. The fact that this book scandalised readers of the day is brilliant. A sensation novel is meant to shock, but perhaps the reading public could not deal with an independent, strong female character who declares her love for a man and the scandal of a immoral wedding all in the same book? It was suggested the book “might be written by a woman but not by a lady”
- Thornfield Hall It’s gothic and perfectly reflects the character of Rochester “I like Thornfield, its antiquity, its retirement, its old crow-trees and thorn-trees, its grey façade, and lines of dark windows reflecting that metal welkin: and yet how long have I abhorred the very thought of it, shunned it like a great plague-house? How I do still abhor”
- Bertha Mason Well wasn’t that a shocker, “Not only are you married Mr Rochester, but you’re wife is also the crazy lady you’ve kept locked in the attic.” Sensation fiction at its best. I love the foreshadowing before this revelation and the creepy ways we are led to believe something is not quite right at Thornfield.
- The Ending It’s perfect. Emotional, but perfect nonetheless.