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Jane Eyre As A Gothic Novel

1254 words - 6 pages

Jane Eyre as Gothic Novel The Gothic Novel Goths—Germanic tribe that fought the Roman Empire Gothic architecture—medieval architecture (spires and narrow windows) differs from neo-Classical style of eighteenth century Gothic novel—often set in such medieval castles, abbeys, etc. (very popular in early C19—Romantic period Gothic fiction Horror stories (contemporary examples: Stephen King, Anne Rice) Setting evokes atmosphere of horror (the red room/ the attic of Thornfield) Supernatural/sublime elements (may be explained, e.g. screams of Bertha Mason Hero is often lonely and lost (Rochester and Jane) Villain is epitome of evil (Bertha or Rochester, even St. John’s Rivers) either due ...view middle of the document...

. . that represents the female experience within domesticity as one of imprisonment, claustrophobia and terror” Repression/suppression (by marriage) gives rise to the monstrous Bertha confined by her family, marriage, and then in Thornfield Confinement in Jane Eyre Gateshead Jane confined because of the weather Confined to the window seat because of John Reed Confined to the red room by Mrs Reed Jane’s confinement to the red room links to Bertha’s confinement Jane and Bertha—confined Jane sees herself as a ghost figure in the mirror (71) Sees Bertha as a ghost in the mirror on her wedding night (371) Jane “utter[s] a wild, involuntary cry” (74), echo Jane’s first hearing of Bertha (175)-corridor equated to that of Bluebeard’s castle Reference to Bluebeard's castle also plays with the entrapment in marriage theme Lowood Confined by the schedule Must be in a certain place at a certain time Confined to the grounds Can only walk in the courtyard or to the church Confined by the uniform—hair cannot even curl Jane and Bertha Madness and marriage Bertha—insane—loss of self Can no longer recognize oneself Jane Jane fears marriage will be a loss of self During engagement she resists becoming an economic dependent When she tries on her wedding gown the image looks unfamiliar The name does not feel like her own. Also Jane is reluctance to let Rochester buy her an expensive wedding veil--the very veil that...

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