Despite the social placement of the characters they all trust Nelly and her friendship, which gives her a great deal of control over any events that occur in Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange. She says that she “was almost always at Wuthering Heights; because [her] mother had nursed Mr. Hindley Earnshaw...and [she] got used to playing with the children” (ch. 4. page 36). The unique way in which Nelly becomes a part of the Earnshaw family provides for her position as a servant but also as a friend and ultimately creates a bond of trust between her and the other family members. Despite her being a servant, the family altogether regards her as one of their own. Before Mr. Earnshaw leaves on a trip he asks what the children would like for gifts and he did “not forget [Nelly]; for he had a kind heart, though he was rather severe sometimes” (ch. 4. 36), showing her complex relationship with the family as a servant but also one of the children, worthy of the gifts and care of Mr. Earnshaw. Multiple times she refers to herself and the children together “us all,” “we” (ch. 4. 35-36) these pronouns emphasize that she was, in fact, a friend of those she served. Later in the story Catherine asks Nelly to “keep a secret for” (ch. 4. 77) her and proceeds to tell her about Edgar Linto...
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...t the mercy of Nelly’s portrayal of everyone in the story. Her role as storyteller gives her power to create or change as much as she feels necessary in order to obtain that which she desires.
The environment of the main characters in the story of Wuthering Heights changes often for reasons seemingly unknown to them, causing great angst and sorrow, or joy and excitement. Some of these characters believe these changes to be caused by their own actions, their feelings, or divine intervention; consequently, their responses are geared towards only those they deem important. However, the true control for the events of their lives lies in the hands of those they consider to be below them; the servants. Emily Bronte comments on the power of servants roles and the underappreciation for their hard work in her novel Wuthering Heights through the minor character Ellen Dean.
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