Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Jane Eyre, the ultimate romance novel published in 1847

I can judge a book by the way I feel when I finish it. The way I felt when I finished reading "Twilight" or the trilogy of "Fifty Shades of Grey" couldn't compare to the way I felt while reading and after finishing "Jane Eyre".  Charlotte Bronte invented the genre of the romantic novel when it didn't have a name. Jane and Rochester's personalities are fully developed like few novels can achieve with their characters.  So when I hear people of my generation bragging about Edward and Belle, Grey and Ann, I tell them that before love existed between a vampire and a human being, or a 26 year old, inexplicably rich guy and a virgin-like 21 year old girl, there was love between a governess and her master in the England of the 1800s.  I also feel like "Jane Eyre" captured as a novel more of the atmosphere of its time, the types of illnesses people suffered, the school girls would go to and the few options for jobs they had, so while enjoying good literature and one might also learn about the social, cultural situations of its time, as written by an author who lived it. 

The following quotes are proof of the love between Edward Rochester and Jane Eyre, or plainly statements I enjoyed reading:

"I sometimes have a queer feeling with regard to you-especially when you are near me, as not: it is as if I had a string somewhere under my left ribs, tightly and inextricably knotted to a similar string situated in the corresponing quarter of your little frame. And if that boisterous channel, and two hundred miles or so of land come broad betweeen us, I am afraid that cord of communication will be snapt; and then I've a nervous notion I should take to bleeding inwardly. As for you, you'd forget me." These are Rochester's words to Jane.

"Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain and little, I am soulless and heartless? You think wrong! I have as much soul as you,-and full as much heart! And if God had gifted me with some beauty, and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you lo leave me, as it is now for me to leave you.  I am not talking to you now through the medium of custom, conventionalities, or even of mortal flesh: it is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God's fee, equal, as we are!" This is Jane talking to Rochester.

"Say Edward-give me my name-" What a great line. Rochester wants Jane to mention his name so he can exist.

"Human beings never enjoy complete happiness in this world" Jane tells Rochester when she is already suspicious about something bad happening because they are just too happy and the world doesn't work like that based on her experiences.

Here comes a quote that every woman, young and old, should live by: "I have an inward treasure, born with me, which can keep me alive if all extraneous delights should be withheld; or offered only at a price I cannot afford to give."