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"What is the significance of 'The Orphan' with reference to Charles Dickens' David Copperfield, George Elliot's Daniel Deronda and Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre"
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Many had lost only one parent, others were abandoned or neglected, perhaps for reasons of penury, and many were illegitimate and marginalized. Victorian times showed no compassion towards children who had no control over their parentage. (Banerjee ibid). Orphans were very often homeless and vulnerable, prey to criminals who used them for their own abusive purposes, turning innocent children into hardened thieves (Sadrin 1994).
Those who were the hardiest managed to survive, ‘...hungry, roaming singly or in packs like young wolves, snatching, stealing, stone-throwing, destructive, brutish, and cruel when not merely hopeless and lost.’ (Roe 27)
There were thousands, and they came into contact with most inhabitants of large British cities, so it was inevitable that they would enter the literature of the day. Authors such as Dickens, Eliot, and Brontë were joined by Charles Kingsley, who wrote The Water Babies, Thomas Hughes, who wrote Tom Brown’s Schooldays, Mrs. Gaskell, who wrote John Halifax, Gentleman, and there is of course George Eliot’s other novel, Silas Marner, among many others.
So much so, that even modern day works such as Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince give us hints of Victorian influence in characters such as Lord Voldemort, and Mrs. Cole, who seems to be modeled on Dickens’ Mrs. Thingummy in Oliver Twist, who was also an orphan and lived in an institution. (Washick 2009)
Charles Dickens did not only use his own childhood as a background for David Copperfield, but described the whole pervasive atmosphere and environment which was London in his early experience and that of all its inhabitants of the time. Little Davy in the novel endures hardship and penury - not only his own, but that of others around him, because he had no father - and he takes it as a matter of course that he and his mother are treated badly.
His whole personality is saturated with the rigors of practical ‘making-do’, which ...
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We see in Jane’s personality that she is most of the time feeling comfortable in solitude. When she comes to know about Bertha, she leaves Rochester even she was madly in love with him. Bertha can be considered as a metaphorical character representing Jane’s rage towards the society that has been controlling her and making her quiet down her emotions.
The book had been referred to as an autobiography probably based on the fact that it mirrors the struggles of a person in life, specifically that of a woman (Bronte). The objective of the paper is to determine the application of psychoanalysis in the understanding of Charlotte Bronte’s literary work, Jane Eyre.
The author of the book review casts light upon some points of the novel "Jane Eyre". According to the essay, the first part of Jane Eyre clearly indicates that Charlotte Bronte was familiar with many fairy tales and myths. Besides, it draws generically also on romance and quest narrative, fairy tale, the Gothic novel, and the Bildungsroman.
The second most notable aspect of the novel is its authorship by a woman. Although originally published under a male pseudonym, it is evident to the scrupulous reader that the work is by a woman, as it contains numerous insights into female psychology. Finally, the novel is at once incisive and critical of the then existing social norms and customs, which were largely unfair to women and the underprivileged.
Jane triumphs in the end, against all the odds through her indomitable spirit, fierce will, and an unwavering sense of justice and morality, which are able to transgress on prevalent mores of society and gender. From the very outset, her social standing is unequivocally spelled out to her:
She lived amid Dominica's people who were primarily of African descent. Being a white girl in a predominantly black community, Rhys felt socially and intellectually cut off (Books and Writers). In 1907 she left the island and went to school in England, returning only once in 1936.
From an unloved childhood, Jane's character is shaped so that she is always driven to find love, to belong and to be recognized as a worthwhile person. She is intelligent, sensitive, loyal, intuitive and hardworking, qualities which she applies to her job as teacher at Lowood Hall, and elsewhere.
The literature and culture of Victorian Britain were entirely different from what we see it today. Times, no doubt, were definitely changing, and society was not as convenient as it used to be in the 18th century. But the metamorphosis was taking place at a very slow, almost unrecognizable pace, and the genteel society was unprepared for being shocked.
Her life, in this novel, is divided into three sections, each of which unfolds new and unexplored aspects of her life. The most apparent theme which emerges after having thoroughly analyzed the novel relates to the social
me of the novel, but in the novel, Jane Eyre does comes out as a character endowed with virtues like a sense of dignity and self esteem, a wisdom that dares to challenge conventional moral and social norms and a mystical sense of spirituality.
There is no denying the fact that
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