What does Bronte wish us to understand about early 19th century

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What does Bronte wish us to understand about early 19th century society from our reading of the first ten chapters of Jane Eyre? In the early chapters, Bronte establishes the young Jane’s character through her confrontations with John and Mrs. Reed, in which Jane’s good-hearted but strong-willed determination and integrity become apparent. These chapters also establish the novel’s mood. Jane is an invented character but there was such a thing as mis-treated children. One type of abuse was the abuse directed to Jane by the Reed family. Jane’s’ aunt makes her life a misery. Jane is starved of love and affection. Mrs Reed finds fault with Jane because she wasn’t a content child. Jane says, “ She really must exclude me from privileges intended only for contented, happy little children.” Mrs Reed gives an unbelievable amount of cruel treatment to Jane; for example, Mrs Reed has a new set of rules exclusively for Jane. John Reed is a child that behaves in an abusive way. No adult in the household stopped John’s behaviour. “He called his mother ‘old girl’…reviled her for her dark skin… and he was still ‘her own darling’.” John vandalized the place; insulted and disrespected his mother despite this; he was still her own darling. John steps out of line, and is despicably behaved. “John Reed…large and stout for his age…with flabby cheeks. He ought to have been at school; but his mamma had taken him home for a month or two, ‘on account of his delicate health’.” This states that John is meant to be in school but his mother feels that his health is fragile, whereas he eats too much and doesn’t do enough exercise. Mrs Reed is unintentionally abusing her own children by over indulging them; this is another form of abuse. Mrs Reed’s children grow up unbalanced and we see towards the end of the book, that John commits suicide. Mrs Reed isn’t teaching her children how to differentiate between right and wrong. There is an extreme contrast between Jane and John’s abuse. Another aspect is that John abuses Jane physically. John attacks her, and for the first time she fights back scratching and crawling. The fact that Jane lashes out at John changes things, even though John attacks her first. The book that Jane chooses off the shelf is called ‘Bewicks History of British Birds’. She describes the books as, showing “death white realms…shadow. The words in these introductory pages…gave significance to the rock standing up alone in a sea billow of and spray; to the broken boat stranded on a desolate coast; to the cold and ghastly moon glancing through bars of cloud at a wreck just sinking.
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