Charlotte Bronte


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Charlotte Bronte (1816-1855), English author and eldest of the famed Bronte sisters wrote Jane Eyre (1847);

It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it. Millions are condemned to a stiller doom than mine, and millions are in silent revolt against their lot....Women are supposed to be very calm generally: but women feel just as men feel; they need exercise for their faculties, and a field for their efforts, as much as their brothers do; they suffer from too rigid a restraint, too absolute a stagnation, precisely as men would suffer; and it is narrow-minded in their more privileged fellow-creatures to say that they ought to confine themselves to making puddings….knitting stockings….playing on the piano….It is thoughtless to condemn them, or laugh at them, if they seek to do more or learn more than custom has pronounced necessary for their sex.-Ch. 12

With a new kind of heroine defiantly virtuous, morally courageous and fiercely independent, Charlotte Bronte brought about change in the style of fiction of the day, presenting an unconventional woman to be admired for her ability to overcome adversity. From her humble beginnings as an orphan under the care of a cruel aunt, governess Jane Eyre falls in love with her mercurial employer, the Byronic Edward Rochester. But then dark secrets of Thornfield Hall threaten to destroy everything she’s worked so hard to achieve. First published under her pseudonym Currer Bell, Charlotte’s famous Gothic romance attracted much public attention. People wanted to know who this new and talented writer was. It was highly lauded by such authors as William Makepeace Thackeray, and has since inspired numerous adaptations for television and film, and numerous other author’s works including Jean Rhys’ ‘prequel’ Wide Sargasso Sea (1966).

Growing up in Victorian England, Charlotte and her sisters were inspired by the Romantic authors of the time including Sir Walter Scott, William Wordsworth and Lord George Gordon Byron. As sisters and authors, Charlotte, Emily and Anne gave each other moral support, shared creative ideas and proof-read one another’s work. As the oldest of the Bronte authors, Charlotte approached her writing career as a means to financial independence and to help support her siblings. She was born on 21 April 1816, at 74 Market Street in the village of Thornton near Bradford in Yorkshire County, England. She was the third daughter born to Maria Branwell (1783-1821) and Anglican clergyman of Irish descent Patrick Bronte (1777-1861). At the time Charlotte was born she had two older sisters, Maria (1814-1825) and Elizabeth (1815-1825), but as was typical of the time mortality rates were high and they both would not live to see their teenage years. Charlotte’s other siblings were; younger brother Patrick Branwell “Branwell” (1817-1848), himself a Byronic figure; Emily Jane (1818-1848); and Anne (1820-1849).

Patrick Bronte was curate at Thornton and the family lived on his stipend as well as Maria’s £50 a year annuity. In 1820 they moved to the village of Haworth to live in the now famous Haworth Parsonage where Patrick had been appointed Reverend. The village of Haworth, set among the heathered moors of Yorkshire, and the Parsonage would soon provide fodder for the Bronte’s novels. It was a typical village of the time with a population of approximately three-thousand. Lack of sewers and poor water supply often caused sickness and disease. In September of 1821, after a lengthy struggle with cancer Charlotte’s mother Maria died. Her sister Elizabeth, “Aunt Branwell” (1776-1842) soon moved in to help Patrick with the children. Charlotte, along with her sisters Elizabeth, Emily, and Maria were then enrolled at the Clergy Daughter’s School at Cowan Bridge, near Kirkby Lonsdale in neighboring Lancashire County. It was a harsh change for them, for they had had idyllic days at Haworth with their parents, playing the piano, telling stories around the great hearth of the Parsonage, doing needlework and embroidery, and making up their own games. After Maria and Elizabeth died of tuberculosis, Charlotte and Emily were hastily returned home to Haworth. Branwell had gotten some wooden soldiers from his father and he and Charlotte started writing stories of their imaginary country ‘Angria’. Charlotte was back at school in 1831, enrolled in Miss Wooler’s School in Roe Head, Mirfield, although she soon returned home to help tutor her sisters. Around this time she wrote her novella The Green Dwarf.

In 1835, Charlotte herself was teaching at Roe Head and she helped pay for Emily’s schooling there. She stayed for three years then resigned, again returning to Haworth. Branwell had started his study of portrait painting and would later create the ‘Gun Group Portrait’ of Anne, Charlotte, Emily and himself, among many others. He was also a tutor and worked at the railway for a time. In 1839 Charlotte obtained a position as governess but disliked it and soon she and her sisters Emily and Anne travelled to Brussels, Belgium to study at the Pensionnat Heger under the instruction of Constantin Heger. They learned French and German and studied literature with the aim to start their own school someday. It is said that Charlotte was in love with the married Heger, this period inspiring her novels Villete and The Professor (1857), which she had submitted to publishers before Jane Eyre but did not see publication until after her death. Charlotte returned home to Haworth and unsuccessfully tried to start her own school, around the same time that Arthur Bell Nicholls (1819-1906) was appointed curate of Haworth. In 1846 the collection of poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell was published, Charlotte’s including “Pilate’s Wife’s Dream”, “The Teacher’s Monologue” and “Passion”;

Could the battle-struggle earn
One kind glance from thine eye,
How this withering heart would burn,
The heady fight to try!

1848 was a sad year for the Brontes: Charlotte’s brother Branwell, who was an alcoholic and addicted to opium died in September and her sister Emily died in December. The following year Anne died, and Charlotte wrote “On The Death of Anne Bronte”;

There’s little joy in life for me,
And little terror in the grave ;
I’ve lived the parting hour to see
Of one I would have died to save.

Charlotte was writing her epic novel Shirley (1849) around this time of great loss and grief and it was noted that there was a change in her tone, as she states in Chapter 1;

If you think, from this prelude, that anything like a romance is preparing for you, reader, you never were more mistaken. Do you anticipate sentiment, and poetry, and reverie? Do you expect passion, and stimulus, and melodrama? Calm your expectations; reduce them to a lowly standard. Something real, cool and solid lies before you; something unromantic as Monday morning

The reviews of Shirley were mixed but Charlotte was welcomed into London’s literary society and she met many other authors of the day including Thackeray and Elizabeth Gaskell. She also set to the task of editing her sister’s works. In 1852 Arthur Nicholls proposed to her, much to her surprise and the consternation of Rev. Bronte. Life was soon unbearable to Arthur and he left Haworth to take a curacy at Kirk Smeaton, about forty miles south of Haworth. In 1853 Charlotte’s Villette was published with similar themes to Jane Eyre and Shirley; the struggles of a strong independent woman and her need for love. After some months of correspondence, on 29 June 1854 Charlotte married Arthur. Her father came to agree that he was worthy of his daughter and approved. They started their very short but happy marriage with a month-long honeymoon in Ireland, then returned to Haworth. On 31 March 1855, after an extended illness, Charlotte Bronte died while pregnant. She now rests with her mother, sisters Maria, Elizabeth and Charlotte and brother Patrick in the family vault of the Church of Saint Michael and All Angels in Haworth, West Yorkshire, England.

After her death, Arthur stayed with Rev. Patrick Bronte to care for him in his declining years until he died in 1861. Not acting as priest anymore, Arthur settled on a farm near Banagher in Northern Ireland. He married his cousin Mary Anna Bell. They would have no children and Arthur died in 1906. As the last of the Bronte family with no heirs, Arthur guarded personal facets of their lives from the curious and critical. In 1857 Charlotte’s friend Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-1865) published her controversial biography and homage The Life of Charlotte Bronte. Charlotte Bronte and Her Circle, by Clement K. Shorter, was published in 1896.

Life, believe, is not a dream
So dark as sages say;
Oft a little morning rain
Foretells a pleasant day.

Sometimes there are clouds of gloom,
But these are transient all;
If the shower will make the roses bloom,
O why lament its fall? “Life”-Currer Bell, aka Charlotte Bronte

Biography written by C. D. Merriman for Jalic Inc. Copyright Jalic Inc. 2007. All Rights Reserved.

The above biography is copyrighted. Do not republish it without permission.

Recent Forum Posts on Charlotte Bronte

Brontë pseudonyms

I am curious about the pseudonyms used by the Brontë sisters. In the first place, Brontë does not seem like a very English name. The only name I can think of that sometimes uses a diaeresis or umlaut is Zöe. I believe in French, this symbol is used when a word contains two consecutive vowels that need to be pronounced separately - as in Nöel, the French for Christmas. However, if it was a French name then surely it would be spelt Bronté. I am sure it was a brilliant bit of marketing. I think I read in a newspaper article that their father's surname was Brantey, but Brontë looks so much better. I am also intrigued by the pseudonyms the Brontës used when they were first trying to get published: Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell. I don't think I've ever met a Currer, Ellis or Acton. In fact, I don't think I've ever heard the names before. In the front of my copy of Jane Eyre, there's a page that reads: Jane Eyre An Autobiography Edited By Currer Bell I wonder how long it too for the publishers and readers to rumble that. The publishers must have cottoned on pretty quickly that the author was a woman, so I wonder why Charlotte Brontë felt the necessity to use a male pseudonym. Maybe it was just to persuade prospective publishers to start reading. However, the publishers, Smith, Elder & Co. had previously rejected Charlotte Brontë's earlier work, The Professor, although they encouraged her to submit something new that could be published in three volumes. They must have twigged they were dealing with women.


WATCHING AND WISHING analysis !!

hi ! my name is nodi ,i am student at Uni and living in Middle East . My problem is that i am working on a search on the poem '' Watching and Wishing '' by Charlotte Bronte and I did not find anything about this poem online at ALL !! i only find the poem ! WATCHING AND WISHING. Oh, would I were the golden light That shines around thee now. As slumber shades the spotless white Of that unclouded brow ! It watches through each changeful dream Thy features* varied play ; It meets thy waking eyes* soft gleam By dawn — by opening day. Oh, would I were the crimson veil Above thy couch of snow, To dye that cheek so soft, so pale. With my reflected glow ! Oh, would I were the cord of gold Whose tassel set with pearls Just meets the silken covering's fold And rests upon thy curls, Dishcvell'd in thy rosy sleep, And shading soft thy dreams ; Across their bright and raven sweep The golden tassel gleams ! I would be anything for thee, My love — my radiant love — A flower, a bird, for sympathy^ A watchful star above. My teacher asked me to analyze it , figure out the themes and to find any critiques on this poem !! please help me !! :(


Need Help, totally lost

I need to find today's leading critic for Charlotte Bronte... anyone have any names I can research because I don't know where to start


Charlotte in Love?

Harriet Martineau wrote “ All the female characters in all their thoughts and lives, are full of one thing, or are regarded in the light of that one thought, love ! It begins with the child of six years old, of the opening (a charming picture), and closes with it at the last page.” “The characteristics of Charlotte's books are emotional force, the exaltation of passion over all the commonplace proprieties, the low -toned feelings, the semi-educated pedantries that are the characteristics of the people who surround Charlotte. “(1) How are we to reconcile that when Charlotte had rejected four marriage proposals and after having experienced 'the Grand Passion', that she finds love (έρωτας) at forty years of age, in her marriage with the Rev. A. B. Nicholls? A marriage that she describes where “ trust the demands of both feeling and duty will be in some measure reconciled by the step in contemplation”. When to Hager she wrote “If my master withdraws his friendship entirely from me I will be completely without hope – if he gives me a little – very – little – I will be content – happy, I will have reason for living – for working - Monsieur, the poor do not need much to live – they only ask for the crumbs of bread which fall from the rich man's table – but if one refuses them these crumbs of bread – they die of hunger – Nor do I need much affection from those I love – I would not know what to do with absolute and complete friendship – I am not used to such a thing – but you once showed me a little interest when I was your pupil in Brussels – and I cling on to preserving that little interest – I cling on to it as I cling to life ...”(2) The contrast in the emotional language is too great for a woman in love. When she described Hager as “a little black, ugly being ....Tom-cat ... a delirious Hyena” and goes on to characterize her marriage as ' Mr Nicholls is a kind, considerate fellow : with all his masculine faults, he enters into my wishes about having the thing done quietly '. A marriage done quietly? A Charlotte who in Jane Eyre said “Sacrifice! What do I sacrifice? Famine for food, expectation for content. To be privileged to put my arms round what I value – to press my lips to what I love...” and “No woman was ever nearer to her mate than I am: ever more absolutely bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh.”(3) There is a contradiction in the above definitions of love and it is Charlotte's own words that gives us a clue “love ! It begins with the child of six years old ... and closes with it at the last page”. Charlotte was 5 years old when her mother died and she was deprived of the maternal love, of the security in love on which she could build her future relationships. In closing the last page, Charlotte felt “Αγάπη ” - expresses the love of parents to children, between friends , for Nicholls but not “έρωτας ” - is more connected to the desire and the sudden and the giddiness of the feeling between lovers. I prefer using the Greek definitions of love, that avoids the English ambiguities, to try to understand what Charlotte meant. References. 1.The Secret of Charlotte Bronte, Frederika MacDonald. 2.Letter, Charlotte to Monsieur Heger, January 1845. 3.Jane Eyre, chapters 37 and 38.


A Tribute

The supreme gift of the authoress of Villette and Jane Eyrey as a painter of emotions, an interpreter of intimate moods, a witness in the cause of ideal sentiments, an incessant rebel against vulgarity and common worldliness, and the stupid tyranny of custom, an upholder of the sovereignty of romance, cannot be weighed against, nor judged by, the same standards as the accomplished literary gift of such finished artists as the authors of Pride and Prejudice and Cranford, such subtle students of character as the authors of Middlemarch and Robert Elsmere, such vigorous fighters for intellectual and moral ends as are represented by the author of the Illustrations upon Political Economy, and the Atkinson Letters. And it is because, as a result of judging her genius and her personality from the standpoint of false impressions, Charlotte Bronte has not been recognised in England as a painter of personal emotions, a Romantic in short, but has been judged as the advocate of a general doctrine (one very agreeable to the convictions of the average man, but especially exasperating to the aspirations and principles of the superior woman) I mean, the doctrine that to obtain the love of a man whom she feels to be and rejoices to recognise as her 'Master' - is the supreme desire and dream of every truly feminine heart it is because, I say, of this mistake, that Charlotte has become the idol of a class of critics least qualified perhaps to appreciate the merits of a romantic rebel against conventional domesticity ; whilst amongst more naturally sympathetic judges, the peculiar perfume and power of these novels, steeped in and saturated with the passionate essence of a personal romance, has not been recognised either for what it really is, the magic of Charlotte Bronte ; the special quality in her work that gives it originality and distinction ; but this very quality the personal note ' that makes her our only English Romantic Novelist, has been signalised by many sincere admirers of her books as a defect ! Frederika MacDonald, The Secret of Charlotte Bronte


Charlotte and Hager

Ksotikoula is always causing trouble - “What do you think happened there? How do see their story? There are people that blame Charlotte and others the Hegers.“ She's not to let sleeping dogs lie, but her questions sometimes provoke unexpected insights. “In Charlotte Bronte's letters to Constantin Heger, the Belgian schoolmaster whom she loved hopelessly, amorous epistolary discourse resurfaces with all the passionate intensity of unrequited love.” That would seem to answer the question. But simple answers sometimes hide more than they reveal. “The extent of Charlotte Brontë's feelings for Heger were not fully realised until 1913, when her letters to him were published for the first time. Heger had first shown them to Mrs. Gaskell when she visited him in 1856 while researching her biography The Life of Charlotte Brontë, but she concealed their true significance. These letters, referred to as the 'Heger Letters', had been ripped up at some stage by Heger, but his wife had retrieved the pieces from the wastepaper bin and had meticulously glued or sewn them back together. Paul Heger, Constantin's son, and his sisters, gave these letters to the British Museum, and they were shortly after printed in The Times newspaper.” In the letter to Ellen Nussey, 14 Oct. 1846, Charlotte wrote that she returned to Brussels in 1842, “prompted by what then seemed an irresistible impulse”, and in 1844 when she left the Heger pensionnat, Charlotte wrote “the biggest single experience of her life .... over.” . And her departure was not quite harmonious, as she uttered “XXX”. However she continued to write to C. Hager well into 1845. Charlotte's portrayal of the temperamental M. Heger as she first saw him in 1842 describes a striking man: “He is professor of rhetoric, a man of power as to mind, but very choleric and irritable in temperament; a little black being, with a face that varies in expression. Sometimes he borrows the lineaments of an insane tom-cat, sometimes those of a delirious hyena; occasionally, but very seldom, he discards these perilous attractions and assumes an air nor above 100 degrees removed form mild and gentlemanlike…. The language is emotionally charged, already indicating a hold on her imagination. “if my master withdraws his friendship from me entirely I shall be altogether without hope; if he gives me little – just a little – I shall be satisfied – happy; i shall have reason for living on, for working .... Nor do I, either, need much affections from those I love .... But you showed me of yore a little interest, when I was your pupil in Brussels, and I hold on to the maintenance of that little interest – I hold on to it as I would hold on to life...”. The following is interesting in that it gives a first person account of Charlotte as well as an assessment of Mr. Smith concurrently with his assessment of Charlotte Bronte. Mr. Smith recounts the first meeting of Charlotte and Anne Bronte. “Two rather quaintly dressed little ladies, pale faced and anxious looking, walked into my room; one of them came forward and presented me with a letter addressed, in my own handwriting, to “Currer Bell, Esq.” I noticed that the letter had been opened, and said, with some sharpness, “Where did you get this from?” “From the Post Office” was the reply, “It was addressed to me. We have both come that you might have ocular proof that there are at least two of us.” This then was “Currer Bell” in person. I need hardly say that I was at once keenly interested, not to say exited.” Mr. Williams was called down and presented, and plans were made for the entertainment of the sisters. The most interesting account of this first visit will be found to be the personal impression made upon Mr. Smith by the two sisters: “This was the only occasion on which I saw Anne Bronte. She was gentle, quiet, rather subdued person, by no means pretty, yet of a pleasant appearance. Her manner was curiously expressive of a wish for protection and encouragement, a kind of constant appeal which invites sympathy. I must confess that my first impression of Charlotte Bronte's personal appearance was that it was interesting rather than attractive. She was very small and had a quaint, old-fashioned look. Her head seemed too large for her body. She had fine eyes, but her face was marred by the shape of the mouth and by the complexion. There was but little feminine charm about her; and of this fact she herself was uneasy and perpetually conscious. It may seem strange that the possession of genius did not lift her above the weakness of an excessive anxiety about her personal appearance. But I believe she would have given all her genius and her fame to have been beautiful. Perhaps few women ever existed more anxious to be pretty than she, or more angrily conscious of the circumstances that she was not pretty.” This, by Mr. Smith, is an astonishingly incisive evaluation on first appearances and level-headedness on his part. While he recognized Charlotte's genius, he was not attracted to her as a woman. Charlotte on the other hand developed an infatuation about him. Less intense that with Heger but strong enough to feel betrayed when she learned of his engagement and deeply hurt that he had not informed her of it. The common element in Charlotte's infatuation, is the love for an authoritarian figure. Even in her engagement to Mr. Nicholls the patter holds; here the authoritarian figure is not man but God. Charlotte announced her engagement to Ellen as “"Providence offers me this destiny. Doubtless then it is the best for me", For Charlotte the lover is the supplicant, the beloved the master. The emotional experience is always this master/supplicant relationship in all her infatuations and has to be distinguished from mature love between equals. In fiction, Charlotte could imagine a relationship where Jane says “Because I am comfortable here.”, but in life, in love Charlotte was not comfortable. Charlotte rejected four marriage proposals: 1)March 1839, Henry Nussey. 2)1839, Mr. Pierce. 3)1851, James Taylor, literary manager of Smith, Elder. 4)1853, first refusal of Mr. Nicholls The common element in the rejections was that the men were not the authoritarian figures of Charlotte's imagination. Only when Charlotte's emotional underpinnings, with the deaths of her siblings and the disappointment with Mr. Smith's engagement, does she break with the previous pattern. Insecurity of a home was a major factor. Charlotte was 38 and the father 77. Their home was only theirs as long as Patric Bronte was the pastor at Hawthorne, on his death Charlotte would have been homeless. Marriage promised a degree of security, but the results were not happy, instead of embracing life, she embraced death. “The Rev. A. B. Nicholls, curate of Haworth since 1845, proposed marriage to Charlotte in 1852. The Rev. Mr. Brontë objected violently, and Charlotte, who, though she may have pitied him, was in any case not in love with him, refused him. Nicholls left Haworth in the following year, the same in which Charlotte's Villette was published. By 1854, however, Mr. Brontë's opposition to the proposed marriage had weakened, and Charlotte and Nicholls became engaged. Nicholls returned as curate at Haworth, and they were married, though it seems clear that Charlotte, though she admired him, still did not love him. “ Regret, a poem by Charlotte, published in 1846 Life and marriage I have known. Things once deemed so bright; Now, how utterly is flown Every ray of light! 'Mid the unknown sea, of life I no blest isle have found; At last, through all its wild wave's strife, My bark is homeward bound. Charlotte was six years old when her mother died. She grew up without the nurturing affection that a mother provides and the confidence that a mother's security provides, as the child experiences the world around her. The emotional scar is forcefully sketched in the opening chapters of Jane Eyre and its permanence is attested by Jane's reaction when she discovers family in Diana, Mary and St. John. Charlotte was masterful in tracing the complexity of evolving love, in fiction. In life she was unable to attain a mature love of a woman. In beginning her exploration of Brontë’s letters to Constantin Heger, Kauffman suggests that the letters reveal Charlotte Brontë’s transformation ‘from Heger’s correspondent into the novelist of Jane Eyre’ (Kauffman 1986: 160). Kauffman intends to connect the rhetorical strategies of the letters and of Jane Eyre to map ‘the metamorphosis of the rhetoric of passion from an authentic to a fictional discourse’ (p. 160). To start with, Kauffman maps out the narrative of Brontë’s and Heger’s encounter including: • Charlotte’s and Emily’s trip to Brussels in 1842 to learn languages; • their return to England at the death of their aunt; • Charlotte Brontë’s return to Brussels alone in 1843; • and her final return to England in 1844. Brontë began writing to Heger after her return and there is evidence to suggest that there were more letters than survive today. In the letters that do remain, Kauffman notes a variety of characteristics that fit the ‘amorous epistolary discourse’ on which her study focuses. These include: • ‘the denial of the reality of separation’; • ‘the desire for contact’; • ‘despair at the master’s silence’; • and ‘resigned desolation’ (p. 161). In initial letters, Brontë is ‘submissive’ and puts ‘emphasis on having been given the authority to write’ (p. 161). However, when Heger write back with a firm, stern tone providing instruction as to how she must write, Brontë rebels and does the opposite; ‘she becomes more outspoken, more indignant, less submissive’ (p. 161-162). Kauffman notes that ‘ike all amorous epistolary discourses, Charlotte’s letters are demands, pleas, threats, and confrontations, filled with the same marks of internal tension, contradiction, self-division, and torment’ (p. 163). She describes Brontë as ‘simultaneously a family intimate and a family employee; the boundaries between belonging to and being excluded from the family are constantly shifting ones’ (p. 163). In Jane Eyre, Blanche Ingram tries to humiliate the governess-heroine and in her letters, Brontë expresses anguish at her humiliation in being a governess. In her letters to Heger, Brontë seems unsure as to whether to situate herself as governess or pupil as she tries to reconcile Heger’s warmth in past encounters and the coldness of his silence. Gaskell and others have tried to suggest that the romance between Heger and Brontë was imagined, but Kauffman provides much evidence that suggests that Heger exploited teacher-pupil relationships on a regular basis with his charismatic personality. Brontë’s letters are always a work of persuasion for him to break his silence and write to her again, which he never does. Silence is of course an obsession of Brontë’s novels too: ‘in her letters, poems and novels Charlotte continued all her life to portray the intense misery of loneliness, exile and unrequited love’ (p. 170). References. 1. Discourses of Desire by Linda Kaufman, Cornell Univ. Press, 1986 2.Winfred Gerin, Charlotte Bronte: The Evolution of Genius. Oxford University Press 1967. 3.‘Charlotte Brontë’s Letters to M. Heger’ by Linda S. Kauffman 4.”http://www.thebrusselsbrontegroup.org/heger.html 5.T.J. Wise and J.A. Symington,The Brontes:Their Lives, Friendships and Correspondence, Oxford i932 6.Charlotte Bronte and her Publishers, New York Times, January 1901. 7.Victorian Web, http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/bronte/cbronte/brontbio.html. 8.The Brontes:Life and Letters by Clement Shorter, Holder Press 1908.


If you could choose a scene from Jane Eyre you would like to see illustrated.

Which one would it be. I am curious because I am doing a Jane Eyre related project. Thank you


The Crimes of Charlotte Bronte

Has anyone read this book? I have. If anyone else has, I am quite curious to hear your take on it.


Bronte Country dvd.

The dvd, Bronte Country, a 2002 production by Delta Entertainment corporation. A Los Angeles based enterprise that has such titles as: Popeye the Sailor Man - Collector's Edition: Vol. 2, Battleship Potemkin, Anyone Can Dance - Nightclub Slow Dancing, Princess Diana: The Uncrowned Queen, and list Bronte Country as Docudrama. One definition of docudrama is :”The use of literary and narrative techniques to flesh out or render story-like the bare facts of an event in history;” At the end of Bronte Country, a supposition is advanced, that Charlotte poisoned her sisters and that she burned a follow up manuscript of Emily's Wuthering Heights because she was jealous of her fame. Even with the disclaimer that there is no proof for such an assumption, making it, is the worst of yellow page journalism, of “fleshing out ... the bare facts”, for a commercial success. The dvd was made without the assistance of the Bronte Parsonage Museum, noting the absence of any interior shots of the Parsonage or the inclusion of the known portraits of Brontes from the National Portrait Gallery. A serious oversight for a documentary and raising the question whether the production met their minimum standards of accuracy. After viewing the dvd, I asked myself what does it want to accomplish, for whom was it intended? Does the title refer to a travel log of Yorkshire or is it a synopsis of the Bronte's writings? It seems to be unsatisfactory on both counts. It does mention some of the writings and biographical information of the Bronte sisters but the details are superficial and a better insight can be had by going to the Wikopedia page. The dvd is 55 minutes long. A more definitive source of Charlotte Bronte is the book: Charlotte Bronte, The Evolution of Genius by Winifred Gerin. (1967, Oxford Claredon Press). It is 601 pages and not gotten through in an hour


Queen Bodecia

Hi: I just finished viewing the PBS Masterpiece Theatre Jane Eyre. At some point later in the show, Rochester makes an angry statement about Queen Bodecia. Can anyone tell me where this specifically appears in the book? Thanks


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