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The various themes in emily bronts novel wuthering heights

The loves of the second generation, the love of Frances and Hindley, and the "susceptible heart" of Lockwood receive scant attention from such readers. But is love the central issue in this novel? Is its motive force perhaps economic?

The desire for wealth does motivate Catherine's marriage, which results in Heathcliff's flight and causes him to acquire Wuthering Heights, to appropriate Thrushcross Grange, and to dispossess Hareton. Consider the following themes: Clash of elemental forces. The universe is made up of two opposite forces, storm and calm. Catherine and Heathcliff are elemental creatures of the storm. This theme is discussed more fully in Later Critical response to Wuthering Heights The clash of economic interests and social classes.

The novel is set at a time when capitalism and industrialization are changing not only the economy but also the traditional social structure and the relationship of the classes.

The yeoman or respectable farming class Hareton was being destroyed by the economic alliance of the newly-wealthy capitalists Heathcliff and the traditional power-holding gentry the Lintons. Striving for transcendence [transcendence: It is not just love that Catherine and Heathcliff seek but a higher, spiritual existence which is permanent and unchanging, as Catherine makes clear when she compares her love for Linton to the seasons and her love for Heathcliff to the rocks.

The dying Catherine looks forward to achieving this state through death. This theme is discussed more fully in Religion, Metaphysics, and Mysticism. The abusive patriarch and patriarchal family. The male heads of household abuse females and males who are weak or powerless.

This can be seen in their use of various kinds of imprisonment or confinement, which takes social, emotional, financial, legal, and physical forms.

The various themes in emily bronts novel wuthering heights

Earnshaw expects Catherine to behave properly and hurtfully rejects her "bad-girl" behavior. Edgar's ultimatum that Catherine must make a final choice between him or Heathcliff restricts Catherine's identity by forcing her to reject an essential part of her nature; with loving selfishness Edgar confines his daughter Cathy to the boundaries of Thrushcross Grange. A vindictive Hindley strips Heathcliff of his position in the family, thereby trapping him in a degraded laboring position.

Heathcliff literally incarcerates Isabella as her husband and legal overseerand later he imprisons both Cathy and Nellie; also, Cathy is isolated from the rest of the household after her marriage to Linton by Healthcliff's contempt for and hatred of them. Study of childhood and the family. The hostility toward and the abuse of children and family members at Wuthering Heights cut across the generations.

The savagery of children finds full expression in Hindley's animosity toward Heathcliff and in Heathcliff's plans of vengeance. Earnshaw's partiality to his own advantage, making no return of affection. Earnshaw's disapproval of Catherine hardens her and, like many mistreated children, she becomes rebellious.

  1. Heathcliff, like Satan, is relentless in his destructive pursuit of revenge.
  2. The abusive patriarch and patriarchal family. The theme of a fall relies heavily on the references to heaven and hell that run through the novel, beginning with Lockwood's explicit reference to Wuthering Heights as a "misanthrope's heaven" and ending with the implied heaven of the ghosts of Heathcliff and Catherine roaming the moors together.
  3. Does Heathcliff fall in his "moral teething" of revenge and pursuit of property? The narrative structure of the novel revolves around communication and understanding; Lockwood is unable to communicate with or understand the relationships at Wuthering Heights, and Nelly enlightens him by communicating the history of the Earnshaws and the Lintons.
  4. Catherine and Heathcliff are elemental creatures of the storm.
  5. Is all their suffering inflicted by others or by outside forces, like the death of Hindley's wife, or is at least some of their torment self-inflicted, like Heathcliff's holding Catherine responsible for his suffering after her death? The male heads of household abuse females and males who are weak or powerless.

The effects of intense suffering. In the passion-driven characters—Catherine, Heathcliff, and Hindley—pain leads them to turn on and to torment others. Inflicting pain provides them some relief; this behavior raises questions about whether they are cruel by nature or are formed by childhood abuse and to what extent they should be held responsible for or blamed for their cruelties.

Is all their suffering inflicted by others or by outside forces, like the death of Hindley's wife, or is at least some of their torment self-inflicted, like Heathcliff's holding Catherine responsible for his suffering after her death? Suffering also sears the weak; Isabella and her son Linton become vindictive, and Edgar turns into a self-indulgent, melancholy recluse. The children of love, the degraded Hareton and the imprisoned Cathy, are able to overcome Heathcliff's abuse and to find love and a future with each other.

Is John Hagan right that "Wuthering Heights is such a remarkable work partly because it persuades us forcibly to pity victims and victimizers alike"? Self-imposed or self-generated confinement and escape. Both Catherine and Heathcliff find their bodies prisons which trap their spirits and prevent the fulfillment of their desires: Catherine yearns to be united with Heathcliff, with a lost childhood freedom, with Nature, and with a spiritual realm; Heathcliff wants possession of and union with Catherine.

Confinement also defines the course of Catherine's life: Displacement, dispossession, and exile. Heathcliff displaces Hindley in the family structure. Catherine is thrown out of heaven, where she feels displaced, sees herself an exile at Thrushcross Grange at the end, and wanders the moors for twenty years as a ghost.

Hareton is dispossessed of property, education, and social status.

Isabella cannot return to her beloved Thrushcross Grange and brother. Linton Heathcliff's son is displaced twice after his mother's death, being removed first to Thrushcross Grange and then to Wuthering Heights. Cathy is displaced from her home, Thrushcross Grange. The narrative structure of the novel revolves around communication and understanding; Lockwood is unable to communicate with or understand the relationships at Wuthering Heights, and Nelly enlightens him by communicating the history of the Earnshaws and the Lintons.

  1. A vindictive Hindley strips Heathcliff of his position in the family, thereby trapping him in a degraded laboring position.
  2. Both Catherine and Heathcliff find their bodies prisons which trap their spirits and prevent the fulfillment of their desires. A vindictive Hindley strips Heathcliff of his position in the family, thereby trapping him in a degraded laboring position.
  3. What are some of these pairs, and what role do.
  4. In many ways, Wuthering Heights structures itself around matched, contrasting pairs of eye witness testimony themes and of characters.

Trying to return to the Grange in a snowstorm, Lockwood cannot see the stone markers which outline the road. A superstitious Nellie refuses to let Catherine tell her dreams; repeatedly Nellie does not understand what Catherine is talking about or refuses to accept what Catherine is saying, notably after Catherine locks herself in her room. Isabella refuses to heed Catherine's warning and Nellie's advice about Heathcliff. And probably the most serious mis-communication of all is Heathcliff's hearing only that it would degrade Catherine to marry him.

Recently a number of critics have seen the story of a fall in this novel, though from what state the characters fall from or to is disputed.

Does Catherine fall, in yielding to the comforts and security of Thrushcross Grange? Does Heathcliff fall in his "moral teething" of revenge and pursuit of property? Is Wutheirng Heights or Thrushcross Grange the fallen world?

Is the fall from heaven to hell or from hell to heaven? The theme of a fall relies heavily on the references to heaven and hell that run through the novel, beginning with Lockwood's explicit reference to Wuthering Heights as a "misanthrope's heaven" and ending with the implied heaven of the ghosts of Heathcliff and Catherine roaming the moors together. Catherine dreams of being expelled from heaven and deliriously sees herself an exile cast out from the "heaven" of Wuthering Heights—a literal as well as a symbolic fall.

Heathcliff, like Satan, is relentless in his destructive pursuit of revenge.