Wuthering Heights Essay

1626 words - 7 pages

The only novel written by Emily Brontë before her untimely death, Wuthering Heights occupies a distinctive position between Gothic and Romantic fiction, and it reflects the central thematic interests of both of these genres. Its melodramatic story spans more than three decades, but it is the supranatural passion between Catherine (Cathy) Earnshaw and Heathcliff that dominates the entire book, exerting a controlling influence over the lives of Brontë's characters long after Cathy's physical demise. Brontë appears to deliberately cloud the central question of whether her story is to be read as a supernatural horror story or an emotionally charged romance. The lightning rod of this issue is Heathcliff, an individual who necessarily evokes powerful but somewhat contradictory responses from the other characters in the novel and from the reader as well. Is Heathcliff a devil or just an extraordinarily driven man? Our response to Heathcliff, to the love he shares with Cathy, and, therefore, to the novel as a whole, is further complicated by the Brontë's use of multiple narrators--Nelly Dean and Mr. Lockwood--each of whom plays a role in the tale, who hold radically different perspectives on the novel's lovers.The relationship between Cathy and Heathcliff is the epicenter of Wuthering Heights, and their love is so intense that it is difficult to characterize, reaching well into the realm of metaphysics. Raised together in the Earnshaw household, Cathy and Heathcliff roam the moors and share identical opinions about the inhabitants of Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange. The depth of Cathy's identification with Heathcliff is evident from her crucial confession to Nelly Dean in which she says, "He's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same," and then adds the now-famous declaration, "I am Heathcliff" (p.92). When Cathy dies in childbirth, fainting in his arms while her husband Edgar looks on, Heathcliff's despair knows no bounds. According to Nelly, "he dashed his head against the knotted trunk; and lifting up his eyes, howled, not like a man, but like a savage beast being goaded to death with knives and spears" (p.176). Heathcliff literally prays to Cathy, asking that her ghost haunt him. His plea is granted. A full generation later, after his scheme to join his son Linton and Cathy's daughter Catherine is foiled, Heathcliff, still haunted by his vision of his long-dead paramour, starves himself into extinction.The seminal setting of Wuthering Heights is the wild landscape of the Yorkshire Moors, a windswept terrain of exquisitely raw beauty and harsh peril. The central characters in the novel are closely associated with the forces of nature. In her critical disclosure to Nelly, Cathy compares her love for Edgar to her feelings about the foliage in the woods, while saying of her passion for Heathcliff that it is akin to the "eternal rocks beneath" (p.92). Animals--rabbits, colts, and...

Find Another Essay On Wuthering heights

Wuthering Heights Essay

1920 words - 8 pages provided a background for her Gothic novel, Wuthering Heights. When Emily, Charlotte, and Patrick were younger they would act out stories creating a fantasy realm in the rural countryside. (Krueger, Christine). In the 1840s, the three sisters, Emily, Charlotte, and Anne, had written poetry throughout their lives together. They submitted their work through a more masculine pen name in hope to elude readers and reviewers. Ellis was the pseudonym for

Wuthering Heights Essay

1133 words - 5 pages When initially diving into a novel, it is common knowledge that there is an already preconceived agreement of trust that the reader instills in the story’s narrator. The reader virtually always relies on the narrator to illustrate the story in an honest unbiased manner, but the story teller in Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights appears to break the chains of trust understood by the audience. The novel is heard through the keen ears of Mr

Wuthering Heights

1030 words - 4 pages Emily Bronte's novel Wuthering Heights is a story of lies, deceit, and revenge. The novels main villain, Heathcliff, was a victim of his environment as well as being a cruel and calculating person. Bronte's villain can be interpreted as one of the cruelest and most evil men that ever lived, while at the same time the reader can maintaining a thought of sympathy for him. His circumstances and actions both lead to these statement being true

Wuthering Heights

1699 words - 7 pages WUTHERING HEIGHTS The book itself Wuthering Heights is a novel that often describe with overwrought adjectives; "passionate", "savages", "tormented", "wild", "raw", "uncanny", "terrible", and refers to the book's "violence", "misery", "thwarted longing", and "immerse power and strength", within the book's own cultural context, these highly changed terms are certainly justified. However the book is memorable for its depictionof an intense

wuthering heights

874 words - 4 pages The most interesting books are the ones that engage you in an ongoing conflict. In Wuthering Heights, a novel by Emily Bronte, you are always caught wondering what will happen next. On one side there are the well-mannered and lavish people of Thrushcross Grange and on the other the instinctive and violent inhabitants of Wuthering Heights. No matter what is happening in the novel it is clearly evident that there is a nature vs. society conflict

Wuthering Heights - 675 words

675 words - 3 pages Heatcliff is an unusual center character, in that he can said to be both the hero and the villain of Wuthering Heights. Explain this statement fully.In the novel Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, the heroic and villainous qualities play a significant role in understanding the character Heatcliff. Heatcliff's passion, his mysterious origins and his contrast between hatred and love helps the reader understand the character Heatcliff. As a hero he

Wuthering Heights - 515 words

515 words - 2 pages "˜Wuthering Heights' is a story about love, betrayal and revenge which spans over two generations of two families. The book is set in England, around the Yorkshire moors, during the late 1700's. "˜Wuthering Heights' is written in English, in a style that is typical to the time when it was written. The plot in the story, is so complicated, it is often difficult to understand.The book actually starts out near the end of the story, with

WUthering Heights

1658 words - 7 pages Wuthering Heights is novel written by Emily Bronte is a story about love. Not only love, but also jealousy and vengefulness. The different types of love portrayed in this novel were obsessive love, parental and family love, and last but not least true love. The different types of relationships in Wuthering Heights that portrayed at least one of the three types of love were Catherine and Heathcliff, Catherine and Edgar, Hareton and little

Wuthering Heights

1911 words - 8 pages There is two stereotypical types of families, one where the children learn from their parents behavior and do the same as they grow up, and the other where they dislike – and do the opposite. In Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, the characters are quite intricate and engaging. The story takes place in northern England in an isolated, rural area. The main characters of the novel reside in two opposing households: Thrushcross Grange and Wuthering

Wuthering Heights - 959 words

959 words - 4 pages Why Catherine Marries Edgar and not Healthcliff in Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights Only the truly fortunate know a love so powerful that it could outlast death it's self. In Brontë's Wuthering Heights, it is obvious to all there is a considerable amount of passionate love between Healthcliff and Catherine so there is much confusion over why Catherine marries Edgar and not Healthcliff. However, I think that we can

Wuthering Heights - 1335 words

1335 words - 5 pages Upon receiving this assignment, I read up on what other critics had written about Brönte's Wuthering Heights. I was not altogether surprised to find critics had taken it upon themselves to 'unravel' the mystery of the novel as if it were some finished jigsaw puzzle they saw fit to deconstruct and reconstruct and then state 'Aha, how clever am I?'. Often reconstruction is a perverse distortion of an original. I am disturbed by the ease with

Similar Essays

Wuthering Heights Essay 658 Words

658 words - 3 pages Essay (Wuthering Heights) Q. Discuss the doubling of settings and structure in Wuthering Heights? Wuthering Heights written by Charlote Bronte, is a book with two settings that have strong impacts on the mood and structure. Throughout the novel, Wuthering Heights is shown as a gloomy and dark place where a great amount of evil and misery was present. On the other hand, Thrushcross Grange is displayed as a place of happiness, joy, and

Wuthering Heights Essay

668 words - 3 pages Wuthering Heights is a classic in which Emily Bronte presents two opposite settings using the country setting. Country settings are often used as a place of virtue and peace or of ignorance and one of primitivism as believed by many city dwellers. But, in the novel Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte has used Thrushcross Grange and Wuthering Heights to depict isolation and separation. Wuthering Heights setting is wild, passionate, and strong and

Wuthering Heights Essay

635 words - 3 pages I848, at the age of only 30, the sensational recognised Wuthering Heights made a monumental dramatic entrance for a certain writer’s career. This writer was a greedy person, greedy for strong passionate words that will zap electrical shocks of emotion, hardship and fear through your body. Words which both you and I cannot ever put together as she did, her name, Emily Brontë. In her spell, she sprinkled some magical dust with n loving-hate

Wuthering Heights Essay 2480 Words

2480 words - 10 pages Wuthering Heights In the first chapter of the book the reader gets a vivid picture of the house Wuthering Heights from Lockwood's descriptions ""wuthering" being a significant provincial adjective, descriptive of the atmospheric tumult to which its station is exposed in stormy weather." It quickly becomes clear that Wuthering Heights portrays the image of its surroundings, the desolate Yorkshire moors fully exposed