Theme Of Exile In Jane Eyre

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Shortly after birth, Jane Eyre Becomes an exile. She physically lives in her aunt’s manor, but she is effectively exiled from the feeling of belonging that can only be found in meaningful familial connections. Her aunt treats her poorly and her cousins, when not ignoring her, openly bully her. She is isolated and, although technically within the boundaries of a stately house, homeless. Jane’s exile from a family and her search for deep human connection drive the plot of the book and is integral to her finally finding a home in her marriage to Mr. Rochester. The first place that Jane’s quest takes her is to the Lowood school. She likes most of the girls there as one does with most sets of acquaintances: some are pleasantly tolerable while others…show more content…
The exception to this rule comes in the form of one Helen Burns. Jane comes to see Helen as a sister. Helen provides an intellectual viewpoint for jane to aspire to, and a reserved sisterly love. Jane uses Helen as a confidante and mentor, although Helen is not a beacon of unbridled optimism; she has a very fatalistic view on life, simultaneously zen and depressing. After one conversation, Jane says, “I was silent: Helen had calmed me; but in the tranquility she imparted there was an alloy of inexpressible sadness.”(59). The unfortunate reality of Jane’s and Helen’s lives is that they are living in trying conditions. The girl’s bond over the hardships they experience, as well as the fact that they both exhibit an intellectual curiosity in an atmosphere that emphasizes conformity and procedural piety over discovery. Unfortunately Helen becomes ill and eventually dies. However Miss Temple, who has become a sort of mother to Jane,…show more content…
Rochester is is where she finds the deep connection that changes the course of her life. They have a quick, witty rapport and are very alike though seemingly different. When they first meet, Mr. Rochester implies that Jane is a leprechaun as a joke. Jane responds with a straight face, “the men in green all forsook England a hundred years ago.”(104). They have a very similar sense of humor and are able to sustain interesting conversations. This leads to an attraction, even though outwardly they are much different. Mr. Rochester is a middle-aged, broken gentleman with a string of meaningless mistresses and a dark marriage in his past, while Jane is a very young woman, right out of a catholic school. They are both ultimately searching for the same human love. At this point in the story, however, they are not similar enough that they can be together. Mr. Rochester loves Jane, but he is still very possessive and values her as a sort of object over her own autonomy. “I will myself put the diamond chain round your neck, and the circlet on your forehead... and I will clasp the bracelets on these fine wrists,” (220). Because of this, their values differ in regards to Jane’s autonomy and her decisions. When Bertha’s marriage to Rochester is exposed, Jane decides she must leave, but Mr. Rochester doesn’t understand how important that is to her. “Jane, do you mean to go one way in the world, and to let me go another?” (269). Jane is very close to ending her period
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