Charlotte Bronte was born in the north of England, Thornton,in 1816.Her fatherwas a clergyman ,her mother died when she was young and she had four sistersand one brother. They all loved read and write. They created a magical worldbased on the stories that they read and invented. She was sent with her sistersto a boarding school at Cowan Bridge (a model for Lowood School in JaneEyre). The bad, severe conditions at the school were responsible for the deathof her sisters. Then she went to an other school, she became a teacher in theschool and also worked in two families as a governess. She studied languages inBrussels where she fell in love with Monsieur Heger that didn’t return her love.Finally she opened her own school with her sister Emily. She wrote samepoems with her sisters and in 1847 she published Jane Eyre which was a greatsuccess and become really famous. She published her work under malepseudonym because people didn’t respect women writers and when peoplerealized that Jane was written by Charlotte accused her to be coarse, vulgar andunfeminine. Her family life wasn’t happy because her sisters and her brotherdied and her marriage was short–lived because she died after one year of aillness connected with childbirth.
Charlotte was born at a time of great change in Britain. She livedthrough the reigns of four monarchs and the last of these was QueenVictoria.During this time Britain was a rich and strong nation,a largeempire with great writers and artists.This was the age of therailways,roads were dangerous and uncomfortable to travel on by horseand carriage.People moved in big cities such as London to findwork.There were rich families but also poor people that had a hardlife.Because of poor living conditions there were diseases likecholera.There were revolts against new machines too which deprivedpeople of their jobs.In this period marriage and church-going were veryimportant.Divorce was almost unknown.In Jane Eyre,Charlotte usedsame of her experiences of life and love,she reflected the injustices ofher time.Orphan children had a terrible life in the schools such asLowood in Jane Eyre.
In the Victorian Age schools were in badconditions,not all but most of them.There wasn’tenough food and clothes.There was only water todrink and a peace of bread to eat.Clothes weren’twarm and the schools were cold , so easily childrenbecame sick. Only rich children went to school orthey had a teacher at home but in 1891 there was alaw and also poor children went to school .
Jane tells her story from her childhood,when she was ten.Her parents were dead and she lived withher aunt,Mrs Reed,that was very rich.Her cousins and her aunt were very cruel with Jane and shewasn’t happy there.One day her cousin,John Reed,hart Jane and the aunt closed her in a cold and darkroom and then they called the doctor.Jane told him what was happened and he decided to send her toschool.Lowood School was cold and not welcoming.All the girls from nine to twenty years wore uglybrown dresses.The school was in bad conditions and many girls died;also Helen,the only Jane’sfriend.She became a teacher in the school and then decided to work as a governess and she went toThornfield Hall to be the teacher of Adèle,a child that the master of the house,Mr Rochester, hadadopted.Mr Rochester was very rich and the house was very big.He wasn’t often at home,he cameback sametimes and for Jane he was an intristing person.He had a beautiful friend,BlancheIngram,that wanted marry him for his richness.Jane was very sad for this marriage because she lovedRochester but she discovered that he wanted marry her,not Blanche.During the marriage,Mr Masonsaid that Rochester had a wife,his sister,Bertha.It was true but Bertha was mad and she stayed in theattic of the house because she tried to kill Rochester.Jane decided to go away,it was impossible adivorce in Victorian society,their marriage was impossible.She went in an other country where abeautiful boy,St John River,and his sisters helped her.She discovered that they were their cousins andthat she was very rich because she recived a testament from her dead uncle.St John asked her to marryhim and go in mission in India but she loved Mr Rochester and decided to came back toThornfild.The house was burnt because Bertha had burnt the house and died there.Mr Rochester,tosave the people in the house became blind but he loved Jane and when she came back they marriedand had two children.Finally after two years Rochester was able to see again with an eye!
Jane Eyre is a BILDUNGSROMAN that means a novel offormation and education. There is the spiritual andpsychological evolution of the characters from their childhood totheir adulthood,maturity. Also the novel “David Copperfield”ofCharles Dickens is a bildungsroman; both are autobiographicalnovels. Charlotte and Dickens talk about their experiences andthey described their society.After Charlotte,other writers wrote some novels like “Jane Eyre”changing the end or the storyteller. There are some parallelismwith “Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte such as the subjects ofhate,death and love. The hate of Jane’s cousin and her aunt forher,the death of Mrs Reed and Bertha and the love story betweenMr Rochester and Jane with a happy end.