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Transcript of Jane Eyre
Jane in the Red Room
Beaten by John and locked in the red room is enough to justify a lot of sympathy for Jane Eyre.
"My head still ached and bled with the blow and fall I had received: no one had reproved John for wantonly striking me; and because I had turned against him to avert farther irrational violence, I was loaded with general opprobrium."
Brocklehurst is not a nice man to Jane from the start. He is very quick to make judgments about her and behave as if he can "fix her". However, Jane does get out a little bit of frustration during this scene, which doesn't necessitate a lot of sympathy, but rather some respect.
"HE, for it was a man, turned his head slowly towards where I stood, and having examined me with the two inquisitive-looking grey eyes which twinkled under a pair of bushy brows, said solemnly, and in a bass voice, "Her size is small: what is her age?"
"Something of vengeance I had tasted for the first time; as aromatic wine it seemed, on swallowing, warm and racy: its after-flavour, metallic and corroding, gave me a sensation as if I had been poisoned. "
Humiliation at Lowood
Janes humiliation is nothing short of unjustified and evil. Brocklehurst really gets at Jane by calling her a liar and embarrassing her in front of everyone she has just met. Only the friendship of Helen could sway this from being the saddest moment for Jane and her psychologically damning life.
There was I, then, mounted aloft; I, who had said I could not bear the shame of standing on my natural feet in the middle of the room, was now exposed to general view on a pedestal of infamy. What my sensations were no language can describe;
Helens death was both sad and traumatizing for Jane. Not only did Jane lay next to Helen as she died, she also got the benefit of losing one of her best friends at Lowood. There are no good parts for this.
"I'll stay with you, DEAR Helen: no one shall take me way."
"Are you warm, darling?"
She kissed me, and I her, and we both soon slumbered.
"but a day or two afterwards I learned that Miss Temple, on returning to her own room at dawn, had found me laid in the little crib; my face against Helen Burns's shoulder, my arms round her neck. I was asleep, and Helen was—dead"
Jane really wants to leave Lowood, but when I read this, I didn't really see a need for it, other than plot progression. Any hardships she faces are her own doing, since she seemed fine at Lowood through teaching. It is a bit too impulsive for my taste.
We parted finally at the door of the Brocklehurst Arms there: each went her separate way; she set off for the brow of Lowood Fell to meet the conveyance which was to take her back to Gateshead, I mounted the vehicle which was to bear me to new duties and a new life in the unknown environs of Millcote.
Rochester and Adele
It is hard to say that Rochester was not stuck with the short end of the stick with his Paris ventures. Even though he was made a fool of, and accused of fathering a child that he may not have anything to do with, he made the honorable move of taking Adele in. Even though this happened before the book began, it is clear that this is still something that haunt Rochester, and this is the first time we hear about it.
"I acknowledged no natural claim on Adele's part to be supported by me, nor do I now acknowledge any, for I am not her father; but hearing that she was quite destitute, I e'en took the poor thing out of the slime and mud of Paris, and transplanted it here, to grow up clean in the wholesome soil of an English country garden."
He is kind of rude at the beginning of all of this, but Jane is drawn to him in a way. He also fell off of a horse and sprained his ankle. All in all, my first impression of Rochester is neutral.
"He had a dark face, with stern features and a heavy brow; his eyes and gathered eyebrows looked ireful and thwarted just now; he was past youth, but had not reached middle-age; perhaps he might be thirty-five. I felt no fear of him, and but little shyness. Had he been a handsome, heroic-looking young gentleman, I should not have dared to stand thus questioning him against his will, and offering my services unasked."
Falling in love!
Jane is extremely jealous of Blanche by this part of the book, and is trying to rationalize her feelings for Mr. Rochester. Not much sympathy for Jane here, since she is the one that is playing games with him and not showing very much emotion with their relationship. Rochester is to blame as well, so it is not entirely her fault.
I had not intended to love him; the reader knows I had wrought hard to extirpate from my soul the germs of love there detected; and now, at the first renewed view of him, they spontaneously arrived, green and strong! He made me love him without looking at me.
The Death of Mrs. Reed
Even on her deathbed, Mrs. Reed manages to tell Jane that she never loved her, and actually lied about her in a potentially life saving situation. Jane gets a final moment with her childhood tormentor, and is finally able to let that part of her life go, without even shedding a tear. This shows strength, in my mind, and deserves a bit of sympathy.
A strange and solemn object was that corpse to me. I gazed on it with gloom and pain: nothing soft, nothing sweet, nothing pitying, or hopeful, or subduing did it inspire; only a grating anguish for HER woes—not MY loss—and a sombre tearless dismay at the fearfulness of death in such a form.
Eliza surveyed her parent calmly. After a silence of some minutes she observed -
"With her constitution she should have lived to a good old age: her life was shortened by trouble." And then a spasm constricted her mouth for an instant: as it passed away she turned and left the room, and so did I. Neither of us had dropt a tear.
Lying to Jane
Rochester lying to Jane just for the fun of it and just to get a reaction out of her is kind of low. She really is upset by his lying, and he thinks that he can do whatever he wants because she loves him anyway. Can we say "patriarchy?"
"Am I a liar in your eyes?" he asked passionately. "Little sceptic, you SHALL be convinced. What love have I for Miss Ingram? None: and that you know. What love has she for me? None: as I have taken pains to prove: I caused a rumour to reach her that my fortune was not a third of what was supposed, and after that I presented myself to see the result; it was coldness both from her and her mother. I would not—I could not—marry Miss Ingram. You—you strange, you almost unearthly thing!—I love as my own flesh. You—poor and obscure, and small and plain as you are—I entreat to accept me as a husband."
The Marriage Disaster
My eyes were covered and closed: eddying darkness seemed to swim round me, and reflection came in as black and confused a flow. Self-abandoned, relaxed, and effortless, I seemed to have laid me down in the dried-up bed of a great river; I heard a flood loosened in remote mountains, and felt the torrent come: to rise I had no will, to flee I had no strength. I lay faint, longing to be dead. One idea only still throbbed life-like within me—a remembrance of God: it begot an unuttered prayer: these words went wandering up and down in my rayless mind, as something that should be whispered, but no energy was found to express them
Jane and Rochester's wedding is rudely interrupted by the sociopath Bertha and her crazy family. This revelation has left Jane devastated, husband-less, and, once, again, fooled. She sure shows how much of a
she is in this book! (Vocabulary words, anyone?) Anways, it is hard to not feel sympathy for this poor girl at this point. All she ever wanted was in front of her, and then ripped away by lies and secrets.
After revealing the lies and secrets that he has held for so long to Jane, he has found a way to truly devastate and hurt her . When he asks her to stay, it comes off as pitiful, not loving. There is no sympathy to be found.
"Mr. Rochester, on hearing the name, set his teeth; he experienced, too, a sort of strong convulsive quiver; near to him as I was, I felt the spasmodic movement of fury or despair run through his frame. "
"You say you never heard of a Mrs. Rochester at the house up yonder, Wood; but I daresay you have many a time inclined your ear to gossip about the mysterious lunatic kept there under watch and ward. Some have whispered to you that she is my bastard half-sister: some, my cast- off mistress. I now inform you that she is my wife, whom I married fifteen years ago,—Bertha Mason by name"
Jane complains about starving and all of that jazz, but it really just becomes a bit whiny and arbitrary, since she is the one who decided to leave the place. Justified or not, I have a hard time not feeling a little melodramatic when feeling bad for Jane and her struggles. She also left Adele, and it is no secret that Adele and I connect on an emotional and personal level. In a way, Jane left me! Anyways, her leaving Thornfield in the middle of the night and complaining about the walk just seems a bit to arbitrary to be taken seriously.
Drearily I wound my way downstairs: I knew what I had to do, and I did it mechanically. I sought the key of the side-door in the kitchen; I sought, too, a phial of oil and a feather; I oiled the key and the lock. I got some water, I got some bread: for perhaps I should have to walk far; and my strength, sorely shaken of late, must not break down. All this I did without one sound. I opened the door, passed out, shut it softly. Dim dawn glimmered in the yard. The great gates were closed and locked; but a wicket in one of them was only latched. Through that I departed: it, too, I shut; and now I was out of Thornfield.
Janes life at Moor:
Running a school
Jane has finally reached a point of near sanity. She has abandoned all that she knew at Rochesters place and has now made her way into teaching at a school. I am proud of her for how far she has come, and spawn a very neutral reaction to her current position in life.
Will you be this mistress?"
He put the question rather hurriedly; he seemed half to expect an indignant, or at least a disdainful rejection of the offer: not knowing all my thoughts and feelings, though guessing some, he could not tell in what light the lot would appear to me. In truth it was humble—but then it was sheltered, and I wanted a safe asylum: it was plodding—but then, compared with that of a governess in a rich house, it was independent; and the fear of servitude with strangers entered my soul like iron: it was not ignoble—not unworthy—not mentally degrading, I made my decision.
"I thank you for the proposal, Mr. Rivers, and I accept it with all my heart."
Rochesters injuries are justified, in my opinion. First, the fire would have never started if he never locked his wife on the third floor. Second, he is still unforgiven for the lies he gave to Jane. Even if his act is heroic, he is getting what was coming to him.
I had dreaded worse. I had dreaded he was mad. I summoned strength to ask what had caused this calamity.
"It was all his own courage, and a body may say, his kindness, in a way, ma'am: he wouldn't leave the house till every one else was out before him. As he came down the great staircase at last, after Mrs. Rochester had flung herself from the battlements, there was a great crash—all fell. He was taken out from under the ruins, alive, but sadly hurt: a beam had fallen in such a way as to protect him partly; but one eye was knocked out, and one hand so crushed that Mr. Carter, the surgeon, had to amputate it directly. The other eye inflamed: he lost the sight of that also.
He is now helpless, indeed—blind and a cripple."
Jane goes back to Rochester
Going back to Rochester is a step back, in my opinion. I understand that she is in love, and I am happy that she is making decisions for herself, but she really is going through thick and thin for this man. She enjoys the feeling of being needed, which is good for her, but it really makes me feel that all of her upcoming problems are, once again, incredibly arbitrary and likely to end up being a direct consequence of her actions.
"Certainly—unless you object. I will be your neighbour, your nurse, your housekeeper. I find you lonely: I will be your companion—to read to you, to walk with you, to sit with you, to wait on you, to be eyes and hands to you. Cease to look so melancholy, my dear master; you shall not be left desolate, so long as I live."
He replied not: he seemed serious—abstracted; he sighed; he half- opened his lips as if to speak: he closed them again. I felt a little embarrassed. Perhaps I had too rashly over-leaped conventionalities; and he, like St. John, saw impropriety in my inconsiderateness
Fever Chart for Jane Eyre
Extreme Sympathy for the
Sympathy is present, but
acknowledge some fault or
alleviation for situation
Lack of sympathy, but the
character isn't entirely
at fault for the situation
Ice cold lack of sympathy.
Near hatred. Completely