Preview
Preview

Essay on Bertha as Jane's Alter Ego in Jane Eyre

:: 2 Works Cited
Length: 1471 words (4.2 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document




- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Bertha as Jane's Alter Ego in Jane Eyre

 
"I resisted all the way," (chapter 2)  Jane says as she is borne away to be locked in the red-room of Gateshead, where she will experience a fit of rage that inevitably arises from her physical and emotional entrapment. Jane evinces her refusal to accept passively restrictive male standards as well as the female predilection towards anger early in the novel. That night in the red-room, Jane experiences a vehement anger that she describes as "oppressed" and "suffocated." From this impassioned rage Jane falls unconscious, and upon waking in the nursery, Jane finds herself prepared to challenge both the oppressive patriarchal society in which she is trapped and the anger this despotism incites. It is not until Jane reaches Thornfield some time later, that she is able to confront her own rage through her encounter with Bertha, Rochester's "savage" wife who has been locked away in the attic of Thornfield Hall for fifteen years. The two are aligned through the restrictions placed upon them by domineering patriarchs; their responses to these circumstances, however, make them antithetical counterparts. While Bertha kindles a fiery wrath toward her oppressor, Jane must learn to contend with her anger so that she will ultimately be free to live a life of true equality and love with Rochester. In the novel Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë draws distinct similarities between the red-room and the attic of Thornfield, suggesting the complex relationship between Jane and Bertha. While Brontë presents Jane as a woman who is determined to subsist in a patriarchal world without allowing her anger to consume her, she also offers Bertha as Jane's alter ego who is imprisoned by her own r...


... middle of paper ...


...n terms by which she can exist equally with Rochester. By subsisting in a patriarchal world without allowing her anger to destroy her, Jane proves that great women can rise out of the most hopeless situations, paving the way for themselves and their posterity to live lives of absolute equality.
 

Works Cited and Consulted

Bronte, Charlotte. Jane Eyre. New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1991

Gates, Barbara Timm, ed. Critical Essays on Charlotte Bronte. Boston: G. K. Hall, 1990.

Kadish, Doris. The Women of Jane Eyre. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1986.

Lodge, Scott. "Fire and Eyre: Charlotte Bronte's War of Earthly Elements." The Brontes: A Collection of Critical Essays. Ed. Ian Gregor. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1970. 110-36.

McLaughlin, M.B. "Past or Future Mindscapes: Pictures in Jane Eyre." Victorian Newsletter 41 (1972): 22-24.


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
The Theme of Misunderstanding in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre and Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea - The Theme of Misunderstanding in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre and Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea In both classical novels Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte a Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys the theme of misunderstanding is represented very widely. Both Victorian era dramatical romantic fictions have some impact in them from their respective authors. Bronte's lonliness is transformed into Jane Eyre's Character whom mostly all characters in the novel misunderstand her until they truly get to recognize her which is towards the end of the novel....   [tags: Literature Analysis, Jane Eyre, Wide Sargasso Sea] 877 words
(2.5 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Essay on Post-colonial Criticism of Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre - A broad focus on Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre reveals multiple perspectives in which postcolonial criticism could be angled. For the most part, this study will explore the representation of a selection of foreign cultures as a foil to Europe’s presumed magnificence. Additionally, focus will be trained on the gender relations as an indicator of patriarchal colonialism. On this second point, the study will attempt to illustrate the various ways in which the character of Jane Eyre is deliberately constructed to counter the male colonialist ego....   [tags: Literary Analysis, Class and Gender Warfare]
:: 4 Works Cited
2198 words
(6.3 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Essay on Reactions to Patriarchal Oppression by Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason - Reactions to Patriarchal Oppression by Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason Missing Works Cited   Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason are both oppressed by the British patriarchal system were men are the makers, interpreters, and enforcers of social and political rules. However, these two women differ greatly in the ways that they accept and cope with the reality of their place in society, and it is these differences that ultimately determine their fate. Jane Eyre follows the rules. Although she initially revolts against what she believes to be unfair restrictions at Gateshead and Lowood, she soon discovers that rebellion carries a high price and, over time, she learns to modify her behavior to conform to so...   [tags: Jane Eyre] 3815 words
(10.9 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Jane Eyre and Bertha Mason Essay - ... Rochester seemed quite afraid of. Once things started to settle down, Mason snuck up to the infamous third floor, but ended up getting stabbed and bitten. Jane was asked to tend to Mason’s wounds while Mr. Rochester went to get the doctor. Richard Mason left the house the next morning before anyone can find out what happened. After all of the chaos from the party ended, Mr. Rochester decided to ask Jane to marry him. During the Nineteenth Century, this marriage would not be socially accepted in England....   [tags: unhappyness, struggles, Mr. Rochester]
:: 3 Works Cited
1459 words
(4.2 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Jane Eyre Essay example - “I am no bird; and no net ensnares me; I am a free human being with an independent will.” (Bronte, Jane Eyre). This quote expresses Charlotte’s beliefs on women’s equalities. Charlotte Bronte was born in 1816. She was one of six children and lived in Yorkshire County England. She first worked as a governess in the Sidewick family then in the White family for only nine months. Charlotte wanted more for herself, and none of her jobs satisfied her ambitions. When she moved back home, she discovered her sister, Emily’s, poetry and decided to publish a selection of the poems all three sisters wrote....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays] 1313 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay about Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre - The Character of Jane Eyre - The Character of Jane Eyre          What we learn of the central character is considerable. Throughout the novel her dealings with those around her reveal her characteristics. As a child at Gateshead Hall we see that she is impulsive, often alarmingly so, but that she also can be sullen and withdrawn. Thse around her do not find her an easy child - she gives very little of herself away, especially to the Reed family, although there is a slight intimacy with the servant, Bessie. She is intelligent and precocious, preferring the make believe world of books to the harsh and often unsympathetic world of reality....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays] 881 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
The Purpose of Sati in Jane Eyre Essay - The general image of Sati and the reasoning that surrounded it filled the Western imagination with repulsion as well as admiration. In the nineteenth century, Westerners publishing diaries of their travels always included their experiences when viewing Sati. Although these travelers, usually men, watched with horror, they also admired the courage and the dignity of the women involved (Hawley 3). What was known in England of Sati was from the accounts of the colonial officials and travelers who witnessed it (Courtright 28)....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays] 2078 words
(5.9 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Jane Eyre - Woman as Demon Essay - Jane Eyre - Woman as Demon Missing Works Cited Women in Victorian literature often came to be seen as "the other" or in more direct terms, as somehow demonized. This is certainly true in Jane Eyre. Bertha Mason, Rochester's mad wife, is the epitome of the demon in the attic. By virtue of being the first wife she is in continually compared to Jane. Although there are parallels in plot and language between the two women, they are completely different people. In addition, Bronte also depicts other women throughout the novel as something to be feared....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays] 1959 words
(5.6 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Language of Slavery in Jane Eyre Essays - While Bronte’s novel is a story of one woman’s rise from dependant, patriarchal oppression to financial stability and emotional liberation, the narration of that story is often turns to the figurative representation of slavery. Bronte applies the metaphor of slavery to the domestic trials facing British women at the time. Time and again her narrative language turns to this device in order to draw parallels between slavery and other vehicles of oppression, namely gender and class. Just as the majority of issues in the novel are two-sided, the implications of these parallels are two-sided as well....   [tags: Jane Eyre Bronte Papers]
:: 4 Works Cited
2611 words
(7.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on Jane Eyre - Jane Eyre and the Lovemad Woman I was experiencing an ordeal: a hand of fiery iron grasped my vitals. Terrible moment: full of struggle blackness, burning. No human being that ever lived could wish to be loved better then I was loved; and him who thus loved me I absolutely worshipped: and I must renounce love and idol. (311; ch. 27) Jane Eyre’s inner struggle over leaving an already married Rochester is the epitome of the new "lovemad" woman in nineteenth-century literature. Jane Eyre is the story of a lovemad woman who has two parts to her personality (herself and Bertha Mason) to accommodate this madness....   [tags: Jane Eyre Literature]
:: 4 Works Cited
3143 words
(9 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]