Emily Bronte was born in 1818 and published Wuthering Heights in 1847. Wuthering Heights, reflects her experience with both the Romantic Era, which existed from 1785 to 1830, and the Victorian Era, which took place from 1830 to 1848. Romantics placed high importance on the individual, nature and human emotion. The Victorian Era, in turn, was a reaction to the Romantic period. The Victorians had a sense of social responsibility, which set them apart from the Romantics. Wuthering Heights exemplifies both periods with its presentation of a natural, all-encompassing love between Heathcliff and Catherine, encased by the pressures of social rank, responsibility and economics. Bronte’s novel presents a strong criticism of the shallow values upheld by the members of society. By examining Wuthering Heights from a socio-economic stance, one can conclude that the limitations of society and economics have a destructive, dehumanizing, and controlling effect on the individual.
The most riveting moment in the novel is when Heathcliff discovers of Catherine’s death from Nelly; for earlier Catherine declares that their love is like “eternal rocks beneath. I am Heathcliff...always on my mind - not as pleasure...but as my own being” (Bronte 100). Catherine propounds that their love is eternal, not even death will halt it. She is so certain that she even describes them as their own being; one in the same. As a result, Catherine’s death shocked me, mainly because now as the reader I have to witness, first hand, Heathcliff’s shock and rage; filled with anger, questions, and imagery; successfully constructing the most riveting moment in the novel. Before he accepts her death, his anger is projected, for he states “Damn you all! She wants none of your tears!” (Bronte
“It would degrade me to marry Heathcliff now; so he shall never know how I love him; and that, not because he’s handsome, Nelly, but because he’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same, and [Edgar’s] is as different as a moonbeam from lightning, or frost from fire.” These words are spoken by Catherine Earnshaw in Emily Bronte’s novel, Wuthering Heights. The complicated love triangle that exists between Catherine Earnshaw, Edgar Linton, and Heathcliff is central to the plot of Wuthering Heights. This, and other subplots about love between other characters make love the main theme of this novel.
Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights can be considered a Gothic romance or an essay on the human relationship. The reader may regard the novel as a serious study of human problems such as love and hate, or revenge and jealousy. One may even consider the novel Bronte's personal interpretation of the universe. However, when all is said and done, Heathcliff and Catherine are the story. Their powerful presence permeates throughout the novel, as well as their complex personalities. Their climatic feelings towards each other and often selfish behavior often exaggerates or possibly encapsulates certain universal psychological truths humans are too afraid to express. Heathcliff and Catherine's stark backgrounds evolve respectively into dark personalities and mistaken life paths, but in the end their actions determine the course of their own relationships and lives. Their misfortunes, recklessness, willpower, and destructive passion are unable to penetrate the eternal love they share.
Emily Brontë’s novel Wuthering Heights, set in the countryside of England’s 1700’s, features a character named Heathcliff, who is brought into the Earnshaw family as a young boy and quickly falls into a passionate, blinding romance with the Earnshaw’s daughter, Catherine. However, Heathcliff is soon crushed by this affection when his beloved chooses the company of another man rather than his own. For the remainder of the novel he exudes a harsh, aversive attitude that remains perduring until his demise that is induced by the loss of his soulmate, and in turn the bereavement of the person to whom the entirety of his being and his very own self were bound.
The complicated nature surrounding Heathcliff’s motives again adds an additional degree of ambiguity to his character. This motivation is primarily driven by Catherine’s marriage to Edgar and past rejection of Heathcliff, since he was a servant whom Hindley disapproved of. Prior to storming out of Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff overhears Catherine say, “It would degrade me to marry Heathcliff now…” (Brontë 87). The obstacles that ultimately prevent Heathcliff from marrying Catherine provide insight into Heathcliff’s desire to bring harm to Edgar and Hindley. The two men play prominent roles in the debacle, Edgar as the new husband and Hindley as the head figure who refused Heathcliff access to Catherine. Following this incident, Catherine says, “Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same…” (Brontë 87). Catherine’s sentiment indicates she truly would rather be with Heathcliff, but the actions of others have influenced her monumental decision to marry Edgar. Furthermore, Heathcliff is motivated to not only ruin Edgar’s livelihood, but also gain ownership of his estate, Thrushcross Grange. This becomes clear when Heathcliff attempts to use Isabella
Identity is how we define ourselves, how we see ourselves within our communities and it is what we portray to others. In the novel Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë the eloquent use of language allows for the true portrayal of the identities of all the characters in the story. Emily uses anecdotes and metaphors to portray her characters in all their glory. Wuthering Heights is about the consecutive search for one’s true identity by two primary characters. This essay will specifically focus on Catherine and Heathcliff’s search for their identities. Heathcliff and Catherine both vary in social status as the book progresses, each of their respective sexes play a large role in their identities and the choices they make also influence their final identities; these three main factors are what create the identity problem for both Catherine and Heathcliff.
His assertion focuses on how their relationship is a displaced version of symbiotic relationship between mother and child. Emotionally, Heathcliff is the world to Catherine just as a mother is to a child and a child to a mother. (p. 366). This statement is supported by a passage in the novel in which Heathcliff has left and she seeks him calling for him at intervals and crying hard enough to beat out any child (p. 88-90). Upon Heathcliff’s return, Brontë uses language that Wion believes depicts the cessation of their relationship’s development in the Freud’s oral stage of libidinal development (p. 368). Brontë uses phrases such as “drank from hers” when discussing them gazing at each other and “They were too much absorbed in their mutual enjoyment…” (p. 99, 368). The use of this language is interesting and begs us to question if its use was intentional to display the basicness and necessity of their relationship as if to say that they could just as easily not be together as they could stop consuming sustenance. The novel demonstrates many times that the relationship between Catherine and Heathcliff is fundamental to their existence. A major piece of evidence supporting this is Catherine’s breakdown when Heathcliff leaves as well as when Heathcliff and Edgar’s disagreement reaches a point where Edgar forces Catherine to decide between himself and
The novel has supernatural encounters, crumbling ruins, moonless nights and monstrous images hoping to create an atmosphere of mystery and fear. Emily Brontë challenges readers’ minds by creating different themes and filling the novel with symbolism and conflicts. Certain aspects of Brontë’s life contributed to the many elements of Wuthering Heights. For example, the narration, motifs and conflicts can all be traced back to Brontë’s childhood. The characters of the novel also relate to Brontë’s personal experiences from her childhood. One example being the character of Nelly Dean playing the mother role to other characters in the story. The characters of the novel also pass away and marry early because they kn...
Wuthering Heights: Interweaving Characters and Surroundings Definitive criteria for judging the success or failure of a work of fiction are not easily agreed upon; individuals almost necessarily introduce bias into any such attempt. Only those who affect an exorbitantly refined artistic taste, however, would deny the importance of poignancy in literary pieces. To be sure, writings of dubious and fleeting merit frequently enchant the public, but there is too the occasional author who garners widespread acclaim and whose works remain deeply affecting despite the passage of time. The continued eminence of the fiction of Emily Bronte attests to her placement into such a category of authors: it is a recognition of her propensity to create poignant and, indeed, successful literature.