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Background Information for Jane Eyre

Background Information for Jane Eyre

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Background Information for Jane Eyre

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  1. Background Informationfor Jane Eyre By Charlotte Bronte

  2. THE NOVEL • Published in October 1847 • During the Industrial Revolution

  3. Schooling • During the early 19th century, it became fashionable to educate females. • However, free education was not yet available for either sex. • Only the very rich could send their daughters to elegant girls’ schools

  4. 1. Less costly schools were formed by well-meaning benefactors in order to educate poor females. 2. Illness was common because there was not a clear understanding of the relationship between dirt & disease 3. With the new stress on female education, governesses were in demand. 4. Pay was poor, but it was one of the only jobs available to educated, yet impoverished young women Governesses

  5. Role of the governess • Employers & other servants shunned the governess because they felt she was “putting on airs.” • Her employers would ignore her, too, because she had a superior education, which intimidated many people.

  6. A ground breaking novel Why? • The heroine is small, plain, & poor • The heroine is the first female character to claim the right to feel strongly about her emotions and act on her convictions • This romantic ground had previously been reserved for males • Such a psychologically complex heroine had never been created before

  7. Charlotte Bronte • Lived at Haworth, a parsonage • Born of Irish ancestry in 1816 • Mother died of cancer when Charlotte was 5 years old.

  8. The Bronte sisters • Charlotte had 4 sisters and 1 brother. • While at the Clergy Daughter’s School, her 2 older sisters (Maria & Elizabeth) died of tuberculosis

  9. Charlotte’s family con.’t • The Clergy Daughter’s School at Cowan Bridge became the model for Lowood, the fictitious girls’ school in Jane Eyre. • Anne and Emily Bronte were also successful writers. • Charlotte’s brother, Branwell, was a gifted painter.

  10. More on Charlotte’s Family • In 1846, Charlotte & her sisters started publishing poems and began writing novels: • The Professor was Charlotte’s attempt to fictionalize her love for a college professor she had met at Brussels. • In 1847 Wuthering Heights was sister Emily’s first success. Charlotte followed with Jane Eyre.

  11. All 3 Bronte Sisters… • Used a masculine pen name because women writers were not taken seriously at that time in Victorian England. • Charlotte used the name Currer Bell.

  12. Marriage Bells • In 1854 She marries her father's curate, Arthur Bell Nichols. • The next year, she became pregnant, then ill. • She died a month before her 39th birthday

  13. Charlotte’s Religious Views • Father, Patrick Bronte, was an Anglican clergyman • Due to her upbringing, she often wrote about religious hypocrisy—those who preach one doctrine but live by another

  14. Jane Eyre’s Romantic Heritage • The Romantic Movement • Came into play in at the end of the 18th Century. • Championed for the rights of the individual over the demands of society. • Believed that humans were inherently good • Valued imagination over reason • Inspired by nature

  15. Charlotte’s Gothic Influence • Jane Eyre displays some characteristics of the gothic novel: • Imprisoned women • A heroine who faces danger • Supernatural interventions at crucial moments in the plot • A romantic reconciliation

  16. Byronic Hero • This term is created by the famous poet George Gordon, Lord Byron. • Characteristics are… • Proud • Gloomy • Mysterious • Passionate *Mr. Rochester is an example of this type

  17. Charlotte’s Quotes • It is vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. • If we would build on a sure foundation in friendship, we must love friends for their sake rather than for our own.

  18. THE END