Catherine and Heathcliff's Passion in Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

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Love’s Destruction in “Wuthering Heights”

In the novel “Wuthering Heights”, by Emily Bronte, Catherine and Heathcliff’s passion for one another is the center of the story. Catherine appears to struggle with her choices in love displaying immaturity in how she sees the love between herself and Heathcliff. Heathcliff’s love for Catherine is more of a true love, however, “true love” soon turns into an obsession that leads him to madness and, eventually, his death.

Catherine actually detested Heathcliff when they were younger. At their first meeting she sees a scummy, gross and poor little child but as Mr. Earnshaw, Catherine's father, integrates Heathcliff into the family Catherine comes to like Heathcliff and starts to spend a lot of time with him and they eventually become inseparable. Soon after Mr. Earnshaw dies, Hindley, Catherine’s brother, takes over Wuthering Heights and bans Heathcliff to the fields to be a common laborer. This banishment does not stop Catherine from seeking out Heathcliff, it actually increases her adolescent love for Heathcliff.

Catherine has a terrible accident one night when Heathcliff and Catherine where out playing around the Grange, she is bitten by a dog at Thruschcross Grange and is treated by Mrs. Linton, the mistress of Thruschcross Grange, and ultimately meets her son Edgar Linton. After staying with the Linton family for awhile, Catherine returns

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home a “proper” young lady. When she first returns home she is happily greeted, by the servants and her family. Catherine immediately asks for Heathcliff and mocks him “… how very black and cross you look! And how – how funny and grim!” (47) She is quite displeased with the way his looks have changed since she has been gone. After thi...

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...rom not eating properly and the stress that he has put himself through. Heathcliff gets buried right next to Catherine’s grave and has the side of his coffin facing Catherine’s removed so that as their bodies decompose their dust will intermingle to serve as a symbol for everlasting love.

We see in this novel that the love between Catherine and Heathcliff constitutes the center of Wuthering Heights both thematically and emotionally, and, if one is to respond at all to the novel it is difficult to resist sympathizing with that love. The love that brings both the rise of Heathcliff and Catherine and the fall of both of them to the point that they die from not being able to express their love and obsession for one another because in actuality they are soul mates.

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Work Cited

Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights. Oxford University press, 1998

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