Sunday, October 30, 2005

Jane Eyre

Email 5:

I've always preferred Jane Austen's realism to the supernatural darkness of Bronte novels (both sisters). I just don't get why the ending could be considered a happy one. Jane, who has reached the sole possibility of female empowerment through her inheritance, throws away all of the possibilities that that inheritance presents to marry herself to a freak with a castrated arm. I mean seriously! This sooo would not happen. Part of why Jane is happy to be with Rochester is because she's so plain and has nothing to offer and is totally flattered that this rich, charming guy is noticing her. She hasn't been involved with any man before, so this is quite thrilling for her. The second guy she's with seems okay to marry, except he's weird, and she would have married him if she didn't know that she could have done better (cuz she was able to catch Rochester).

But a woman with money is in a unique position to actually have a choice as to who to marry, and Jane has the opportunity to see the world and find the right man for her. This man cannot be the maimed Rochester. There's just no way. Not the guy to made his first wife crazy and then stuck her in an attic. Not the guy who dresses up like a gypsy. Not the guy who has no problem being a bigamist. There has got to be a better man in England! And now she has a chance to find that man because she has that money. It's just like Jude the Obscure and how he can't find the right woman, he just meets the two and thinks he has to choose. At least in Jane Austen the right guy is there somewhere, you just have to figure out which one he is. I'd take a Darcy over a Rochester any old day.

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