Saturday, August 8, 2009

Jane Eyre

Is this where the expression "plain Jane" comes from? Far from being plain, I rather enjoyed the book; and found Bronte's style far more readable than Jane Austen's. The story was acceptable, too... although the bit in front of Jane's life at the orphan school seemed to go on forever. But I suppose Bronte included it so that we could get the full perspective of life from Jane's view- to fully appreciate how un-loved she felt most of her life. Poor thing.

Even though the book was readable, I found some of the character dialogue to be too romantic- nobody, and I mean nobody, would really talk this way:

"My living darling!These are certainly her limbs, and these her features; but I cannot be so blest, after all my misery. I have clasped her once more to my heart, as I do now; and kissed her, and thus- and felt that she loved me, and trusted that she would not leave me."

"Which I never will, sir, from this day."

"Never will, says the vision? But I always woke and found it an empty mockery; and I was desolate and abandoned- my life dark, lonely, hopeless- my soul athirst and forbidden to drink- my heart famished and never to be fed. Gentle, soft dream, nestling in my arms now, you will fly, too, as your sisters have fled before you: but kiss me before you go- embrace me, Jane."


Some of Bronte's descriptions were a tad over- the- top, as well:

"...a redundancy of hair falling in curls to her waist,"

"A little hamlet, whose roofs were blent with trees, straggled up the side of one of these hills..."

"That evening calm betrayed alike the tinkle of the nearest streams, the sough of the most remote..."

And one of my favorites: "A rude noise broke out on these fine ripplings [sic] and whisperings, at once so far away and so clear: a positive tramp, tramp, a metallic clatter, which effaced the soft wave- wanderings; as, in a picture, the solid mass of a crag, or the rough boles of a great oak, drawn in dark and strong in the foreground, efface the aerial distance of azure hill, sunny horizon, and blended clouds, where tint melts into tint."

O--K. Somewhere she goes on and on about an "alabaster brow" too, but I can't seem to find it.

Anyway, except for the laughable romantic semantics, I would recommend the book. It is, after all, a classic- and one of the more entertaining ones too (that is, if you can get through the orphan school!).

1 comment:

  1. wow...i started to read this book one year for a paper project but ran out time to finish it and sparknoted the last 8 or so chapters...i originally intended to go back and finish reading it but never did.

    perhaps I will reread it now?

    i love your take on the book. :)

    and you are majoring in English Lit? I'm doing Creative Writing. You'd think we would run into each other more around the English building or something. Hmm....