Presentation on theme: "Jane Eyre Alex Morano Jill Thompson-Grim Prathik Patel Monica Gomes Cristian Maldonado."— Presentation transcript:
Jane Eyre Alex Morano Jill Thompson-Grim Prathik Patel Monica Gomes Cristian Maldonado
The Prompt “Search on character names to see how their presence comes and goes throughout the book. What can you say about the movement of plot or the focus on various characters based on this analysis?”
Prompt (Literal) Meaning Our prompt is basically about how Jane grows and develops as characters are introduced into and separated from her and her life. How does the presence and absence of these characters represent significant moments in Jane’s transformation?
Examples from Text “I still felt as a wanderer on the face of the Earth; but I experienced firmer trust in myself and my own powers, and less withering dread of oppression. The gaping wound of my wrongs, too, was now quite healed; and the flame of resentment extinguished” (Bronte263).
Analysis: When Mrs. Reed reenters Jane’s life, Jane is no longer aggrieved by Mrs. Reed’s abuse during her youth. Jane has come to peace with the relationship she has with Mrs. Reed because Helen Burns taught Jane to turn the other cheek when abused by others. When Jane’s values are tested by the reappearance of her ailing aunt, Jane must use the value of forgiveness that she learned from Helen. The reappearance of Mrs. Reed represents a significant development of Jane’s character and therefore is important to the movement of the plot, which itself is based around Jane’s development.
Example #2: "Edward and I, then are happy: and the more so, because those we love most are happy likewise" (Bronte 492). “perhaps it was that circumstance that drew us so very near- that knit us so very close: for I was then his vision” (Bronte 491).
Analysis Jane’s return to Edward and marriage to him represents the culmination of her development and the resolution of the plot, which is inextricably linked with her growth as a character. Having left both Rochester and St. John before, Jane has achieved self-realization and understands that she can sacrifice neither principle nor passion if she is to be true to herself. Her marriage to Rochester, because of her inheritance, no longer includes inherent inequality and she feels as though she has control over her future, linking the reintroduction of Rochester with Jane’s emotional development.
Example #3 “I dimly perceived that she was already obliterating hope from the new phase of existence which she destined me to enter; I felt, though I could not have expressed the feeling, that she was sowing aversion and unkindness along my future path; I saw myself transformed under Mr. Brocklehurst’s eye into an artful, noxious child, and what could I do to remedy the injury?” (Bronte )
Analysis The arrival of Mr. Brocklehurst represents the first major shift in Jane’s life and leads directly to a new stage in her development as a character. He is only one of number of authority figures who is cruel to Jane, but despite this his offer to teach her at Lowood presents Jane with some form of social mobility, counteracting Mrs. Reed’s claim that her low birth means she will be poor and worthless her entire life. Brocklehurst’s cruelty only inspires Jane to become more independent, as she develops her self-respect and refuses to be treated like a criminal when she has done nothing wrong. These traits are central to her character and her growth, and the opportunities, however limited, provide by Brocklehurst, incite their growth and development, forming the cornerstone of her personality and the principles she will adhere to for the rest of her life.
Significant Moments The death of Helen at Lowood “‘But where are you going to, Helen? Can you see? Do you know?’” (Bronte 84). ‘‘I am sure that there is a future state; I believe God is good; I can resign my immortal part to Him without any misgiving’” (Bronte 84) Helen’s death has a significant impact on Jane’s life because this is her first real loss. Jane never had the opportunity to mourn her parents but Helen is the first person she grew close to and subsequently lost. Helen teaches Jane about the goodness inherent in religion, as she uses her faith to make her a loving and forgiving person, traits that are instilled in Jane and change her, especially after Helen’s death.
Cont. Jane’s first interaction with Rochester “I had hardly ever seen a handsome youth; never in my life spoken to one” (Bronte 119). “it marked with change one single hour of a monotonous life. My help had been needed and claimed” (Bronte 121). The introduction of Rochester into the novel, though Jane doesn’t yet know his identity, represents the beginning of a new era for Jane that correlates with her desertion of Lowood for Thornfield. As Jane remarks, this is the first time she has taken an active role in a situation; her life up until then has been lived passively and after helping Rochester she feels as though she has contributed, however trivial said contribution may be. This is also the first time she has ever interacted with a man who wasn’t directly in a position of power over her, a marked change and new experience in her life. This introduces her to Rochester’s character (though she doesn’t know it) and opens a new and important plot point- Jane’s relationship with Rochester.
Cont. Jane leaves Rochester after discovering his still-extant marriage to Bertha “‘The more solitary, the more friendless, the more unsustained I am, the more I will respect myself. I will keep the law given by God’” (Bronte 342). “it whispered in my heart- “My daughter, flee temptation’” (Bronte 345). Jane’s departure from Rochester is especially significant to Jane’s growth as a character, effectively this is the most difficult departure for her. Though Rochester is her first love and Thornfield her first home, Jane cannot allow herself to live as his mistress because it would require a compromise of principle that she cannot allow herself to make. She already feels uneasy about the inherent inequality in her relationship with Rochester because of his high socioeconomic rank and in order to stay true to herself she leaves him, wanting to maintain control over her life.
Cont. Jane refuses to marry and subsequently leaves St. John and leaves both him and Moor House behind “It was /my/ time to assume ascendancy. /My/ powers were in play and in force…I must and would be alone” (Bronte 457). “‘ My spirit…is willing to do what is right; and my flesh, I hope, is strong enough to accomplish the will of Heaven’” (Bronte 458). Cold and reserved, St. John is a foil to Rochester and in her relationship with St. John, though it is never romantic, Jane faces an opposite problem than when she left Rochester. She knows that St. John doesn’t love her, and she reciprocates this (lack of feeling)- a marriage to him would be purely for functionality, and Jane would be forced to ignore her feelings. The departure of St. John from the novel represents Jane’s realization that her emotions and passions are just as important to her sense of self as the principles she preserved by leaving Rochester.
Bibliography Bronte ̈, Charlotte. Jane Eyre: introduction by Joyce Carol Oates. New York: Bantam Dell, 1987. Print.
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