Bird Imagery in Jane Eyre Essay example

:: 5 Works Cited
Length: 2720 words (7.8 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Green      
Open Document

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

In Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte uses many types of imagery to provide understanding of the characters and also to express reoccurring themes in the novel. Through bird imagery specifically, we are able to see Jane develop from a small, unhappy child into a mature and satisfied young woman. "The familiarity and transcendence of birds have given them a wider range of meaning and symbol in literature than any other animal. The resemblance of their activities to common patterns of human behavior makes them exceptionally suitable for anthropomorphic imagery that links man to the common forms of nature" (Lutwack xii). Through the use of birds such as doves and sparrows Bronte enables the audience to gain insight into the type of person that Jane is, caring, selfless, and independent. It also allows the reader to see what type of person Mr. Rochester is, strong and controlling, by comparing him to eagles and cormorants. The connotations involved with the specific birds mentioned in Jane Eyre allow the reader to become aware of the distinct traits the characters possess and certain reoccurring themes presented in the novel.

Bronte allows the reader to see the loneliness that Jane is experiencing at Gateshead Hall, by showing the relationship between her and birds. Dismissed from conversation with Mrs. Reed and the Reed children Jane retreats to a window seat and disappears into her own imaginative world with Thomas Bewick’s History of British Birds. She is concerned more with the illustrations than the text, she states "the letter-press I cared little for, generally speaking" (20; ch. 1). Through these illustrations, Jane is able to relate to the feeling of solitude expressed by the pictures. One drawing in particular that Jane observe...

... middle of paper ...

...round Europe. Rochester, who is likened to birds of prey, seems to fit the description of these birds well. Being ravenous and preying on others is something that Rochester continually does during the novel, and this helps exemplify his dark character. By utilizing these specific connotations that particular birds carry with them the reader is better able to comprehend the traits of Jane and Rochester.

Works Cited
Bewick, Thomas. History of British Birds. Newcastle: Beilby, 1797.
Bronte, Charlotte. Jane Eyre. Ed. Beth Newman. Boston: St. Martin’s, 1996.
Lutwack, Leonard. Birds in Literature. Gainesville: Up of Florida, 1994.
Renfroe, Alicia. "Prometheus Unplugged." 1996.
<> (25 March 2011).

Rowland, Beryl. Birds With Human Souls, A Guide to Bird Symbolism. Knoxville: U of Tennessee P, 1978.

Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

This essay is 100% guaranteed.

Title Length Color Rating  
Nature Imagery and Themes in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre Essay -     Charlotte Bronte makes use of nature imagery throughout Jane Eyre, and comments on both the human relationship with the outdoors and human nature.  The Oxford Reference Dictionary defines "nature" as "1. the phenomena of the physical world as a whole . . . 2. a thing's essential qualities; a person's or animal's innate character . . . 4. vital force, functions, or needs."  We will see how "Jane Eyre" comments on all of these.         Several natural themes run through the novel, one of which is the image of a stormy sea.  After Jane saves Rochester's life, she gives us the following metaphor of their relationship: "Till morning dawned I was tossed on a buoyant but unquiet sea ....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays]
:: 8 Works Cited
2006 words
(5.7 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Bronte's Jane Eyre Essay: Importance of Nature Imagery - Importance of Nature Imagery in Jane Eyre       Charlotte Bronte makes extensive use of nature imagery in her novel, Jane Eyre, commenting on both the human relationship with the outdoors and with human nature. The Oxford Reference Dictionary defines "nature" as "1. the phenomena of the physical world as a whole . . . 2. a thing's essential qualities; a person's or animal's innate character . . . 4. vital force, functions, or needs." Bronte speaks to each of these definitions throughout Jane Eyre....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays]
:: 8 Works Cited
1548 words
(4.4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Importance of Art in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre Essay - Importance of Art in Jane Eyre        It is said that art is like a mirror to the soul, a way to see what the artist is feeling deep down in their heart.  It is as if their most personal thoughts and ideas are reflected in their work, either consciously or unconsciously.  Charlotte Brontë utilizes this fact in her imagery and portrait of Jane Eyre.  Color and vivid description play a vital role explaining the process of emotional and physical maturation throughout the novel, from young Jane's recollection of the red room in Gateshead to her final reminiscence of Ferndean's gloomy facade....   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1240 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Fantastical Ideas and Gothic Tendencies in Jane Eyre Essay - Fantastical Ideas and Gothic Tendencies in Jane Eyre The novel, Jane Eyre, is infused with fantastical ideas and gothic tendencies. The novel is an example of Bildungsroman heroine with the title character Jane maturing from childhood. We see her spiritual, psychological and social development. Through this development Bronte manages to join both fantastic elements with a more realistic structure by weaving in references to fairy tales, dreams, mythic imagery and plot twists. Fantasy is used by Bronte to inform the reader of any emotional subtexts in the novel....   [tags: Jane Eyre Fantasy Charlotte Bronte Essays] 1104 words
(3.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte: An Imaginative Journey - An ‘Imaginative journey takes us from reality and transfer us into unreal existence that not only entertains us, but helps us learn more about the world we live in’ this statement can be used to emphasizes the imaginative journey that Charlotte Bronte explores in the novel Jane Eyre. The imaginative journey that Bronte takes the readers on is explored through her thoughts of the concepts of supernatural, religion and passion. Through the gothic genre Bronte is seen ‘exploring the imaginative journey’ in the novel Jane Eyre....   [tags: religion, imagery, passion]
:: 1 Works Cited
671 words
(1.9 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Jane Eyre an Analysis of Nature Essay - Jane Erye Jane Eyre - Analysis of Nature Charlotte Bronte triumphs in many arenas with her masterpiece "Jane Eyre". She develops a beautiful setting and endearing characters, that sometimes overshadows some of the more subtle aspects of her novel. One very important element that is sometimes overlooked is the use of nature imagery and comments on the human relationship with the outdoors and human nature. The Oxford Reference Dictionary defines "nature" as "1. the phenomena of the physical world as a whole ....   [tags: essays papers] 1918 words
(5.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on The Ecology of Jane Eyre: Surviving the Struggles - The Ecology of Jane Eyre: Surviving the Struggles Wild, calm, fierce, gentle, damaging, nurturing – nature, such an unpredictable force, can be paralleled with Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre. Many of Jane Eyre’s characters resemble nature, and many of the novel’s events are supported or foreshadowed by occurrences in nature. Jane Eyre’s main character, Jane, is shown maturing from child to adult. Jane’s metamorphosis throws her from the fairytale escape she has created, into real life that she must adapt to in order to survive....   [tags: Essays Papers] 1218 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Charlotte Bronte's Portrayal of the Injustices Suffered by Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte's Portrayal of the Injustices Suffered by Jane Eyre In the schoolroom scene, Charlotte Brontë portrays the injustices suffered by Jane Eyre but expressing her pain through figurative language and illustrating her pain through a vivid image in the readers' mind. She also does this by using Mr Brocklehurst, so that the audience can empathise with Jane and see the injustices in a better perspective. The descriptions of Mr Brocklehurst's clothes are illustrated in the readers' mind....   [tags: Papers] 627 words
(1.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Fire and Water Imagery in Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre" Essay - Fire is the process in which materials ignite and combine with oxygen to give off heat, light, and flames. Likewise, water is composed of H20 molecules and acts as a counter to fire by possessing the ability to extinguish it. However, in literary terms, fire is mostly related to passion while water usually represents reason and calmness. Both elements are considered unique because of the ability to destroy and give life. Water can be directly related to life since it is an essential element for survival and makes up most of a human’s body....   [tags: imagery, Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre,] 667 words
(1.9 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Essay on Imagery in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre - Imagery in Jane Eyre     Charlotte Bronte wrote the novel Jane Eyre in the mid-eighteen hundreds. In her novel she expresses her views on many important factors present during this time including social problems such as race, class, gender, and the role of religion. Each of these factors affects the way that the protagonist, Jane Eyre, grows as a person. Throughout the novel Charlotte Bronte uses images and symbols that either influence or represent Jane's growth. Bronte uses a common imagery throughout the novel reflecting images of "fire and ice." She also uses symbols in Jane's life such as the red-room, from her childhood, and the character Bertha Mason Rochester, during her t...   [tags: Jane Eyre Essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
1086 words
(3.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]