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Charlotte Bronte and Women of the 19th Century

            Some of the nineteenth century novels that have been written by female writers focus on the development of women in a patriarchal society. Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyer" is one such novel that has faced a lot of social criticism. Published in 1847, the novel faced a lot of social criticism as Bronte challenges the 19th century idea of a women and creates the character of Jane who demands respect, wants to work , is bold and shows the act of passion.
             Charlotte Bronte herself experienced a childhood without a mother which is why her novel somewhat depicts her feelings and emotions regarding a girl having to face society without having a motherly figure to look up to. It is possible that the reason behind Jane's character and nature has a lot to do with a missing mother figure. The missing mother is a stoke characteristic in a Victorian novel. Jane questioning various social and moral negotiations is due to her experience of a maternal loss. The whole concept of a misguided child that a lot of Victorian critiques wold call her throws light on the importance of a woman in the society, not only as a mother but also as a mentor. Jane is an orphan in the novel who spends her childhood in a family that does not completely embrace her. She can't look up to her aunt Mrs Reed as an alternative mother figure so she finds comfort in Bessie who is a social inferior. She manages to look up to Helen Burns and Mrs Temple but doesn't mould into either of them. In the end Jane marries , not out of duty or to just become a mother but for love which was very unlikely in that era.
             During that era a woman was expected to be calm and compassionate. The only tasks that was considered nobel by a woman were to knit, play the piano and embroidering bags. She was not given the permission to be expressive about her feelings and opinion. Bronte in her novel rebuilds the character of a woman. Jane voices her opinion about how women should be allowed to work on her talents instead of taking care of just the house, she should be given a chance to be educated and work.

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