I am a great lover of Charles Dickens and Jane Austen, etc. But I don't always feel like reading old-fashioned things. If I were in the mood for old-timey language I would (and should) read the scriptures. But when I read Jane Eyre I remembered stuff like that endures. I'd forgotten, which is weird because in graduate school they told us like every day.
Jane Eyre makes some pretty big decisions based on her values. I share her values so I thought she made good choices. I wonder if someone who doesn't share her values thinks this book is dumb or pointless or a book about how oppressive societal and religious conventions are. Jane (spoiler) won't marry or live with her true love, Mr. Rochester because he is already married to a crazy lady. It all kind of turns on that point. But Jane also realizes that if she lives with him as his mistress, he'll get sick of her like he got sick of his other mistresses. One thing Mr. Rochester loves about Jane is her goodness and strong will. If she loses her integrity she won't be the same person. I always think about this kind of thing when a man leaves his wife for another women. The other woman knows the man is not a faithful guy because he left his wife for her. You'd think it would be a turn off. I guess women who have affairs with married men have lower standards than I have.
There are many beautiful scenes that should be quoted at length here. In fact, this should be more academic and precise and I should try harder to articulate what is good about Jane Eyre. Nevertheless, there are certain perks to having a blog instead of a PhD and off-the-cuff bullet lists are one of them.
Best things About the Book Jane Eyre, Bulleted:
- Ghosts and the possibility that Mr. Rochester has a vampire hidden away on the 3rd story
- A happy ending--a happy, crippled, burned, consummated ending
- 2 ugly people find true love--that's rare
- The figurative string tied on one end to Mr. Rochester's rib and fastened at the other end to Jane's
- Forgiveness instead of vengeance, although vengeance is awfully tasty too
- Saying no to St. John. That guy was a weirdo
- Getting a ton of money in the end for doing nothing. Lucky Jane
- Jane is smart and plucky. Good for her
- Partial return of eyesight!
"I have now been married ten years. I know what it is to live entirely for and with what I love best on earth. I hold myself supremely blest—blest beyond what language can express; because I am my husband’s life as fully as he is mine. No woman was ever nearer to her mate than I am: ever more absolutely bone of his bone, and flesh of his flesh. I know no weariness of my Edward’s society: he knows none of mine, any more than we each do of the pulsation of the heart that beats in our separate bosoms; consequently, we are ever together. 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."
And now without further ado, a playlist of songs from Mr. Rochester to his dear little Jane. Blogging perk!