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How Does Jane Eyre Change Throughout The Novel

In the book Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte Jane travels many places as a young woman. It begins with her at Gateshead, where she lives as a young child. She then goes to a private school called Lowood. Here, she learns many disciplines and gains wisdom. After being a teacher for two years at Lowood she wants to seek a new way of life. Jane travels to Thornfield; she meets Mr. Rochester, a man who causes her to mature at the young age of 18. She learns that she must start making decisions for herself.

During spring time, she leaves without a destination and comes across a town named Marsh End. Here she meets relatives and gains a sense of independence. After having her newfound independence she decides she must go back to Mr. Rochester and journeys back to Ferndean. In Ferndean she finally has what she always wanted, a relationship full of pure and truthful love and independence. As Jane has aged and traveled place to place she has gained an immense amount of knowledge and experiences a sense of growth by the end of the novel. Jane is stuck living at Gateshead when she is a young child.

There was a disliking having to live at such a gloom household, she wanted to be extricated from her family there; she was treated even lower than the maids and other help. Jane always described Gateshead as “dreadful” especially “coming home in the raw twilight,” (Bronte 1) when she had to return to the house and sleep. Jane had a fear of being at Gateshead because no matter what she did, she would be reprimanded for it, and sometimes sent to the Red Room. The Red, “Room was chill, because it seldom had a fire; it was silent… solemn, because it was known to be so seldom entered,” (Bronte 8) and it was also where her uncle had passed away.

With her uncle being gone it was very hard for Jane because Mrs. Reed had a great disliking for Jane. Jane learned that she must restrain her thoughts and actions some of the times to prevent her from being punished. Gateshead was not a good place for Jane to grow up because John Reed abused her and would be punished for defending herself. She was just beginning to learn that she should stand up for herself and thinks to herself, “I resisted all the way: a new thing for me,” (Bronte 22). She only lived in Gateshead for a short part of her life, but learned to ignore the harangue from her family.

Jane eventually got to leave Gateshead and went to a private school called Lowood; a very insipid place. While at Lowood Jane experienced many emotional changes. When she first arrived she noticed that all of the girls had, “plain locks combed from their faces,” (Bronte 45). This shows that all of the girls were taught to be the same, almost like they did not have their own personality. Jane was a very plain person, so fitting in was some what easy, except for the times she was reprimanded by Mr. Brocklehurst. This taught her become stronger and withstand unfair treatment.

To add on, Lowood school was a very destitute place. During the time of the typhus disease Jane was put through hardship and she, “swallowed the remainder with an accompaniment of secret tears, forced from [her] by the exigency of hunger,” (Bronte 60). Jane had a hard time at Lowood because it became very dreary as typhus spread. As many as half of the girls passed away, including her friend Helen. Helen provided guidance for Jane and told her, “ Why… should we ever sink overwhelmed with distress, when life is so soon over, and death is so certain an entrance to happiness– to glory? ” (Bronte 70).

This made Jane realize that she should do what fulfills her own vivacity. At the age of 18, Jane decided that she wanted to move away from Lowood. After being a pupil for six years and a teacher for two, she wanted to do something new. She became a governess at a place called Thornfield; where she gained prudence. She quickly took a liking to, “the hush, the gloom, the quaintness of [the] retreats in the day,” (Bronte 110), while she lived at Thornfield. She finally was able to live in a place where she felt at peace. Jane took a liking to being herself, and ended up being able to express her real personality.

She did not let people like Miss. Ingram interfere with her personality. Miss. Ingram, “was not good, she was not original” (Bronte 215-216) and Jane had a certain power within herself where she did not let other people’s opinions affect her. Jane grew emotionally a great amount. At her younger she had never had much of an interaction with guys. However, her master, Mr. Rochester, was a person she grew fond of. She, “had not intended to love him… He made [her] love him without looking at [her],” (Bronte 185). Mr. Rochester was able to entrance Jane with his enigmatic ways.

That all changed when she found out that Rochester was already married, she had antipathy for his wife because she was crazy. She was reproached and could not stay with him. Jane travels hopelessly in search of a place to go, wandering on for days on end. She stumbles upon a house far out in the marsh, and luckily is welcomed in by a man named St. John. Here she was able to grow as a person and learned new things about herself. She went on to teach at a school and had her own cottage. Jane thought herself happy, but in reality she was sad and yearned for Rochester.

She had a “desperate grief and fatal fury,” (Bronte, 390) to be with Mr. Rochester, despite the distance she had traveled to get away from him. Busying herself with chores and teaching did not help. She became very close with her cousins, Diana and Mary. They were people Jane looked up to and shared “mutual affection” that was “of the strongest kind,” (Bronte 403). This helped Jane grow because she was able to know that she had two very halcyon cousins, who became more like sisters to her. Jane was sanguine that she would be able to live out her life teaching with her cousins by her side. One day she heard Mr. Rochester call out of her, and had a propensity to go to him; so that is what she did.

Jane went to Rochester without much of a second thought. He was living in a place called Ferndean. Mr. Rochester had lost his vision so he was not able to see that it was Jane when she finally arrived. After Jane overcame obstacles she faced while trying to reach Rochester her “heart leapt up,” (Bronte, 460) as she got closer to him. Jane noticed a difference in Rochester’s personality. His “cruelty [had] extinguished” like a “sightless Samson,” (Bronte 469), which evinces he went through a change. This caused Jane’s liking towards him to increase, and made her realize that she had never stopped loving him.

He was able to fight through a great sense of fortitude, which is something she admired. Jane had a passion that grew every time she was with Rochester. Jane felt the most at home whenever she was with Rochester, which led her to choosing to stay with him. In addition, Jane felt that she could be herself with him, which caused them to have a truthful and pure love for eachother. In the end, Jane become a very wise young woman. Every place that she traveled she gained different levels of knowledge. She chose to stay in Ferndean with Rochester because she felt the safest there with him.

Rochester became effusive when she accepted his marriage proposal. She wanted “more of intercourse,” while she was still in Moors end then what was, “within [her] reach,” (Bronte 111), which is another reason why she wanted to be with Rochester. As Bronte says, “It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it,” (111), and this is what Jane did for herself. She went with the wind, until it carried her back to Rochester, where she gained independence and a passionate love.

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