Great Books, Great Art: Jane Eyre


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  • Before this point in the story, Jane has lived in a world of abuse and neglect. She has no reason for happiness, and wishes she was someone else. However, as she comes to realize that Bessie really does love and care for her, Jane is given something worth living for. The highlighted words give this passage a hopeful, serene tone. The use of the word “gleams” reminds the reader that Jane’s life is not always happy, and by saying “even for me”, Jane may be suggesting that she does not feel she deserves any happiness.
  • Jane is always wishing her life would improve, and that she could be more like her cousins. She is depressed about her situation, and despises her abuse. However, even she still has her salvation. Bessie’s love saves Jane from a solitary existance, and gives her something to be happy about. In this poem, Shakespeare says that no matter how hard life is, or how much we wish we could change, we all have our own salvation. This saving grace can be taken by no one, and should be envied by all. The tone in this poem is depressed and complaining at first, using words such as “disgrace”, “beweep”, “trouble”, “curse” to make the reader have sympathy for the narrator’s situation. The second stanza turns whistful, using words such as “wishing” and “desiring” to express the narrator’s wants. However, the last stanza becomes romantic, upbeat and hopeful. The narrator expresses his love for this girl, saying that he wouldn’t give her up for anything, not even to become king. Overall, both Shakespeare and the poem express that as difficult and depressing as life is, there will always be something beautiful and miraculous to make up for the pain.
  • This painting could perfectly represent the relationship of Bessie and Jane. There is a definite connection between the two people, shown by how they are holding hands. The older woman has a motherly look about her, she obviously cares about the girl. The girl is looking at the ground and walking slower, perhaps showing that she has endured hardship like Jane has. The landscape in front of the figures is smudged and unclear, alluding to an unknown future. The ground they are walking over is rutted and scarred, as Jane’s life has been. Everything about this picture is bleak and desolate, except for the bond between the two people. It means everything to this picture. The relationship Jane has with Bessie means everything to her.
  • Tin this passage, Jane sees Rochester for the first time after a long separation, and every feeling for him that she has tried to repress is brought up again. The tone of this passage is forced and somewhat accusatory. Although it is not particularly a bad thing, the love Jane feels for Rochester is not one she would have chosen herself. She uses words like “mastered”, “fettered” and “extirpate” to show the forced nature of this love, and how she had absolutely no control over it. One of the most striking phrases is the simplistic statement of “He made me”. Jane almost seems to be creating an excuse for her love, blaming it all on Rochester.
  • This poem has a wistful, longing tone that compliments the tone expressed in the text. In the passage, Jane describes how she had no choice but to love Rochester, it was out of her control. The narrator of La Belle Dame Sans Merci is in a similar situation, though he does not view the love as a ‘germ’. He describes his enslavement to his mystical love with words such as “alone”, “loitering”, “withered” and “sojourn”. These show that he is not in love with this faery of his own free will, he was forced to love her, much as Jane feels.
  • This painting could be Jane, sitting and pondering her feelings for Rochester. The girl in the painting is a servant of the house (as seen by the work clothes she has on, and the lack of any high-value personal items on her shelf), just as Jane is a servant of Rochester’s love. The subject in this painting seems is bemused with her thoughts, but not completely pleased. There is no smile, just a lovestruck look. Jane feels much the same way, and although she does not want to be in love, she accepts this feeling.
  • The tone of this passage is cheerful and easygoing. Jane seems very relaxed, she is musing to herself about her relationship with Rochester. She is very pleased with her life; this can be seen by her use of the words “free”, “gay”, “devoted” and “perfect concord.” Overall, this is an simple, easygoing summary by Jane of her pleasing life with Rochester.
  • This poem describes the extreme love between two individuals, and connects with the idea from the passage that “two is better than one”. The words “strong”, “wings”, “contented”, “angels”, “golden”, and “Beloved” all show the love the narrator has for her husband. The poem is positive and upbeat, with no negative words describing the relationship. Jane would describe her relationship with Rochester in a very similar way, emphasizing the fact that they are better together.
  • The trees in this photograph have grown together to the point that each tree is dependant on the other for support. This very well represents the connection that Rochester and Jane have. They have, over the years, essentially become a singular person. They rely on each other, and think of the other as an extension of themselves. The trees in the photo are so connected that if one was destroyed, the other would be, too. The use of lighting in this picture make the trees look joyful, while the soft curves bring about a relaxing, calm tone. The trees in this picture are Rochester and Jane, supporting each other throughout eternity.
  • Great Books, Great Art: Jane Eyre

    1. 1. Jane Eyre By Emily Bronte Katelyn Barber
    2. 2. Text <ul><li>“ Bessie stooped, we mutually embraced , and I followed her into the house quite comforted . That afternoon lapsed in peace and harmony ; and in the evening Bessie told me some of her most enchanting stories, and sang me some of her sweetest songs. Even for me life had its gleams of sunshine .” </li></ul><ul><li>Pg. 38 </li></ul>
    3. 3. William Shakespeare Sonnet #29 <ul><li>When, in disgrace with Fortune and men's eyes, </li></ul><ul><li>I all alone beweep my outcast state, </li></ul><ul><li>And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries, </li></ul><ul><li>And look upon myself and curse my fate, </li></ul><ul><li>Wishing me like to one more rich in hope, </li></ul><ul><li>Featur'd like him, like him with friends possess'd, </li></ul><ul><li>Desiring this man's art, and that man's scope, </li></ul><ul><li>With what I most enjoy contented least: </li></ul><ul><li>Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising, </li></ul><ul><li>Haply I think on thee,--and then my state </li></ul><ul><li>(Like to the lark at break of day arising from sullen earth) sings hymns at heaven's gate; </li></ul><ul><li>For thy sweet love remember'd such wealth brings </li></ul><ul><li>That then I scorn to change my state with kings </li></ul>
    4. 4. Going Home Friedrich Karl Hermann von Uhde
    5. 5. Text <ul><li>Most true is it that ‘beauty is in the eye of the gazer’. My master’s colorless, olive face, square, massive brow, broad and jetty eyebrows, deep eyes, strong features, firm, grim mouth—all energy, decision, will—were not beautiful, according to rule; but they were more than beautiful to me, they were full of an interest, and influence that quite mastered me—that took my feelings from my own power and fettered them in his. I had not intended to love him; the reader knows I had wrought hard to extirpate from my soul the germs of love there detected; and now, at the first renewed view of him, they spontaneously revived, green and strong! He made me love him without looking at me. </li></ul>
    6. 6. La Belle Dame Sans Merci John Keats <ul><li>I met a lady in the meads </li></ul><ul><li>Full beautiful, a faery's child; </li></ul><ul><li>Her hair was long, her foot was light, </li></ul><ul><li>And her eyes were wild. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>I set her on my pacing steed, </li></ul><ul><li>And nothing else saw all day long; </li></ul><ul><li>For sideways would she lean, and sing </li></ul><ul><li>A faery's song. </li></ul><ul><li>And this is why I sojourn here </li></ul><ul><li>Alone and palely loitering, </li></ul><ul><li>Though the sedge is withered from the lake, </li></ul><ul><li>And no birds sing. </li></ul>
    7. 7. Meditation John George Brown
    8. 8. Text <ul><li>To be together is for us to be at once as free as in solitude, as gay as in company. We talk, I believe, all day long: to talk to each other Is but a more animated and an audible thinking. All my confidence is bestowed on him, all his confidence is devoted to me; we are precisely suited in character— perfect concord is the result. </li></ul><ul><li>Pg. 491 </li></ul>
    9. 9. When Our Two Souls Elizabeth Barrett Browning <ul><li>When our two souls stand up erect and strong, </li></ul><ul><li>Face to face, silent, drawing nigh and nigher, </li></ul><ul><li>Until the lengthening wings break into fire </li></ul><ul><li>At either curvéd point, — what bitter wrong </li></ul><ul><li>Can the earth do to us, that we should not long </li></ul><ul><li>Be here contented ? Think. In mounting higher, </li></ul><ul><li>The angels would press on us, and aspire </li></ul><ul><li>To drop some golden orb of perfect song </li></ul><ul><li>Into our deep, dear silence. Let us stay </li></ul><ul><li>Rather on earth, Belovèd, — where the unfit </li></ul><ul><li>Contrarious moods of men recoil away </li></ul><ul><li>And isolate pure spirits, and permit </li></ul><ul><li>A place to stand and love in for a day, </li></ul><ul><li>With darkness and the death-hour rounding it. </li></ul>
    10. 10. The Dancing Trees Alfred Stielglitz