Tag: charlotte bronte

Being Poor While Female in Charlotte Brontë’s Villette (1853)

Nearly eighty years after the publication of Charlotte Brontë’s novel, Villette, Virginia Woolf laments the poverty of women in her classic book, A Room Of One’s Own. In that classic piece is the famous conclusion that “a woman needs money and room of her own if she is to write fiction”(4). But how to attain it in a culture and time in that culture where women were notoriously poor?  Woolf speaks of how she came to having money of her own, five hundred pounds a year, left to her by her aunt “Mary Beton” who “died by a fall...

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Charlotte Brontë: Jane Eyre’s Righteous Anger, British (1816-1855)

Jane is plain. Jane is fiery. Jane is passionate. She is outspoken. She will not be controlled. Jane is powerful and articulate but most of all, Jane is angry. Brontë’s character, Jane Eyre, was criticized as unchristian, vulgar, and unfeminine. Jane rails against her position in life—an orphaned, moneyless woman in Victorian England—feeling her lack of options unjust and unfair. Jane thinks thoughts women in the 1840s were not supposed to think.  Thoughts like: I am equal. I wish to be treated as equal. Most of us know this novel was originally published under the pen name Currer Bell,...

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