Jane Eyre Themes

Mind Map by 银焰, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by 银焰 over 5 years ago


Mind Map on Jane Eyre Themes, created by 银焰 on 07/22/2014.

Resource summary

Jane Eyre Themes
1 The Gothic
1.1 The Red Room
1.1.1 Pgs 8-9 ‘tapenade’ – associated with death “strange little figure...coming out of lone” “tiny phantoms” – fantasy, phantom like “Mr Reed had been dead nine years...breathed his last” – ghost stories “crimson cloth”-red repetition emphasising Jane’s fear “pale throne” – death image
1.2 Thornfield Arrival
1.2.1 Pgs 84-92 There is mystery surrounding Thornfield and Rochester as the reader is ‘drip-fed’ details, leaving the scene to the reader’s imagination Thornfield itself is presented as a gothic mansion with wild roses growing up the side showing signs of neglect and reflects Rochester’s character Through the story of ‘Blue Beard’ Bronte hints at violence and imprisonment : both features of female suffering in the Gothic At the end of the chapter Jane hears a mysterious laugh: Bertha’s first appearance in the novel
1.3 Jane walking in the country lanes just before her encounter with Rochester
1.3.1 Pgs 95-96 “The ground was hard, the air was still, my road was lonely” “dimness” “low-gilding and pale beaming sun” –little light adding to the eerie atmosphere “wild roses” –overgrown and untamed “utter solitude and leafless repose” –little life, reflects her loneliness
1.4 Rochester’s first appearance
1.4.1 Pgs 100-101 So far Rochester is still unknown, and for four months there was no sign of Rochester When they first meet Rochester still doesn’t reveal his true identity His features are described as being ‘dark’ – mysterious, evil? Rochester’s dog reminds Jane of an old folk tale which represents a bad omen
1.5 Bertha’s outburst
1.5.1 Pg 180-187 At the night of Mr Mason’s arrival, he is attacked by Bertha and is left wounded This scene is a particular good example for the Gothic in Jane Eyre as the night Mr Mason is attacked there is a full moon which is associated with supernatural creatures such as werewolves and vampires “I saw too that his linen on one side and one arm was almost soaked in blood”-Blood: a reoccurring symbol in Gothic novels such as Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’ in which Stoker uses blood as a symbol for sex “moistened the corpse-like face” –Half -dead “She sucked the blood: she said she’d drain my heart” –Vampire like
1.6 Before Rochester’s 1st Proposal
1.6.1 Pg 218-219 “the trees were in their dark prime” “antique garden” – reference to a time long past “I trode on an edging of turf that the crackle of the pebbly gravel” – nature foreshadowing events ‘moth’ – associated with old or/and dead things “As I crossed his shadow, thrown long over the garden by the moon, no yet risen high” – Rochester’s shadow is distorted and eerie
2 Romance
2.1 Jane and Rochester
2.1.1 >>> Obstacle one: Jane is of a lower class and it would be a scandal if the two were to be married! >>> Obstacle two: Rochester is already married to Bertha: the mad woman he keeps in the attic
2.1.2 Jane takes the job of being a governess at Thornfield; which is owned by Rochester. Shortly after working there Jane falls in love with her employer; however there are many obstacles preventing them being together
2.1.3 After Mr Mason interrupts the wedding in chapter 26, Jane leaves Thornfield as she is heartbroken Jane has to learn how to love without sacrificing herself completely and her moral compass that she clings tightly to
2.1.4 Jane inherits money from her late Uncle and discovers that the Rivers are distant family members: this changes Jane’s status and she gets the family she always longed for Jane dreams of Rochester and even hears his voice on the moors She rushes back to Thornfield to find the estate burned down
2.1.5 She finds Rochester at Ferndean, as he is recovering from his injuries. Rochester is more humble as a result of his injuries They finally marry, have a child and live happily ever after at Ferndean
3 Superstiton
3.1 The story of Gytrash
3.1.1 In chapter 12, a few months into Jane’s stay at Thornfield, Jane goes on a walk in the country. Whilst watching the moon rise alone, a horse approaches. A story that Bessie once told her springs to mind. The story was of a spirit called Gytrash, who disguises itself as a mule, dog or horse to frighten travellers. Gytrash generally is a bad omen.
3.1.2 As the horse comes closer, a dog and a rider also appear from the misty weather As the horse and its rider pass Jane, the rider slips on ice and is injured Taking into account that Gytrash is a bad omen, was this all a warning that Jane should have left?
3.2 Dream of babies
3.2.1 Jane dreams on a series of consecutive nights about babies. Jane remembers what Bessie said about dreaming of babies that it was “a sure sign of trouble, either to one’s self or one’s kin” (chapter 21) Jane thinks the dream is a bad omen
4 Religion
4.1 Mr Brocklehurst
4.1.1 Brocklehurst is a cold and wicked character in the novel Though he is charitable as he gives money to the school (Lowood) it seems that he could be more giving, he is also seen to be hypercritical as his family are lavished in fine clothing
4.1.2 When we first met Brocklehurst Bronte describes him as “a black pillar” with a “grim face at the top was like a carved mask” (Pg 25) And again he is described as being “black marble” (pg 56) when he punishes Jane at Lowood These descriptions of Mr Brocklehurst make him seem cold, evil, two-faced and emotionless
4.2 St.John
4.2.1 St.John is described as being cold and emotionless “Statue” “ivory” (pg304) –beautiful yet cold “marble kisses or ice kisses” (pg352)
4.2.2 Before St.John proposes a second time, he reads a passage from the bible about hell etc, this is very manipulative of St.John as he is trying to influence Jane’s decision. He also doesn’t want to marry out of love; he wants Jane as a wife to serve him and accompany him on pilgrimages
4.3 Helen Burns
4.3.1 At Lowood Helen takes many punishments, yet doesn’t rebel, here she is almost Christ-like Helen quotes from the bible to Jane in her times of doubt, almost like a teacher. She also speaks of Heaven and this life being less important which could be interpreted as lacking an appetite for life
4.3.2 Helen can be seen as a messianic figure, an example of this would be the chapter when Helen dies, and even the markings on Helen’s grave ‘Resurgam’ meaning ‘I will rise again’ can be seen as Christ-like
4.4 Jane
4.4.1 Jane is a very moral character and shows all virtues of an Victorian Society When Jane leaves Thornfield she seeks spiritual guidance; which she finds at the River cottage Jane herself attends church later on in the novel when she stays with the Rivers.
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