Two new Brontë-related dissertations: A Cat-And-Dog Combat: Upsetting the Brute in Wuthering Heights Hanley Cardozo, Kristen MarieUniversity of California, Davis, ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 2021 Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë’s only novel, ...
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"BrontëBlog" - 5 new articles

  1. Upsetting the Brute
  2. Retellings and 'what if's'
  3. Studying Emily Brontë's poetry and Wuthering Heights
  4. It could be Charlotte Brontë by Jane Eyre too
  5. Brontë Studies. Volume 46. Issue 4
  6. More Recent Articles

Upsetting the Brute

Two new Brontë-related dissertations:
A Cat-And-Dog Combat: Upsetting the Brute in Wuthering Heights
Hanley Cardozo, Kristen Marie
University of California, Davis, ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 2021

Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë’s only novel, adapts the tropes of slave narrative to construct a schema of animalized humanity. By reading Wuthering Heights as a novel about slavery, not just as a novel onto which a reading of slavery can be projected, this thesis proposes a Wuthering Heights in which the greatest sin is seeking to deny one’s own beastliness by animalizing others. Brontë’s animalized humans fall on a spectrum. On one end is the classic brute, a culturally dominant figure of the brutish laborer. At the other end of the spectrum is the British brute, a trope from slave narrative, in which humans lose their humanity by denying the humanity of those they wish to dominate. Heathcliff has often been seen as the singular brute figure in Wuthering Heights, but in fact, every character in the novel is multiply animalized, compared to, paired with, and otherwise associated with nonhuman life. By focusing on this spectrum of brutishness, the racialized nature of white characters is made visible, as is their tendency to deny their own animality. The novel makes a distinction between violence and cruelty. While violence can be cruel, cruelty is not always violent, and many of the characters often
viewed by readers, including Charlotte Brontë, as the novel’s least harmful, are cruel rather than violent. I examine the Earnshaws’ enslavement of Heathcliff over two generations, the Lintons’ attempts to distance themselves from the sources of their fortune, and the ways that the two estates function as plantation space and British soil. What emerges from this reading is a picture of greater moral complexity and entanglement with the afterlife of British slavery.
Vilema Cóndor, E.P.
Trabajo de Titulación modalidad Proyecto de Investigación presentado como requisito previo la obtención del Título de Licenciada en Ciencias de la Educación, Mención: Ciencias del Lenguaje y la Literatura], 2021
Universidad Central del Ecuador

The present research has as general objective to recognize the characteristics of psychological realism in the novel Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, since, in this literary work, various narrative resources are used which allow both the author and the reader to delve into the thoughts, emotions and sensations of the characters, mainly in its two protagonists, Jane Eyre and Edward Rochester. For this purpose, first, the psychological realism will be defined and its characteristics will be established as well as its relationship with psychoanalysis and psychology. Later, the literary work will be analyzed, since in it, it can be appreciated a deep reflection on the woman’s condition in the English society of XIX century. Likewise, this work, apart from being a clearly psychological novel, it is also a psychosocial treaty about the conduct and nature of woman, duality, confinement, hope and femininity, for this reason, its analysis is important since it is one of the first works to deal with issues such as feminism and woman’s rights.
   

Retellings and 'what if's'

Classic characters are set on a modern stage in order to set a message about female empowerment. The characters must get married, but they do not want to. The classic stories of Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, and Little Women are written in a new way that showcases the modern age while retaining the essence of the past.
The playwright, Jaclyn Backhaus, blends the classic stories of Charlotte Brontë, Emily Brontë, Jane Austen and Louisa May Alcott together. Backhaus imbued the play with an ingenious mix of the past and present to create a funny, but serious, story about women and the nature of a woman’s power. [...]
Audience members who have enjoyed adaptations of Jane Eyre, Pride and Prejudice or the Little Women will find these stories within the play, but within a background of female empowerment set against the many possibilities for women today, beyond the realm of marriage. (Victoria Fatiregun)
And more 'What if's' as Slate features So Many Beginnings by Bethany C. Morrow, which wonders how Little Women would change if the March women were Black.
The premise of the series is deceptively simple: What if the protagonists of classic works of literature like Treasure Island, Wuthering Heights, and Robin Hood weren’t white? In April of 2020, Feiwel and Friends, a young adult subdivision of Macmillan, announced the launch of a new project called Remixed Classics. (Rachelle Hampton)
Wuthering Heights is expected to be released in July 2022 as What Souls Are Made Of: A Wuthering Heights Remix by Tasha Suri.

And more retellings too as BuzzFeed News recommends '26 New Science Fiction And Fantasy Books To Read This Fall' including
Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood (Wednesday Books; Oct. 19)
This mesmerizing Ethiopian-inspired gothic reimagines Jane Eyre in a fantasy setting. Andromeda was trained as a debtera — an exorcist who cleanses houses of evil spirits — though her mentor refuses to license her officially. She’s barely making a living when the wealthy Magnus Rochester hires her to rid his castle of its evil spirits. When she arrives, she’s shocked by what she finds. Deadly manifestations fill the castle beginning at 10 p.m. and continue throughout the night. She’s never seen such a multitude of evil spirits all in one place and never this deadly. She’s unsure if she’ll be successful at ridding the castle of its hauntings, but, desperate for money and finding herself somewhat attracted to the handsome Mr. Rochester, she agrees to take the job. (Margaret Kingsbury)
In the southern hemisphere, Jornal Cruzeiro do Sul (Brazil) recommends reading Wuthering Heights during springtime.

Elizabeth-Rose Sandhu, 17, [who] penned a poem, inspired by her love of nature to win the award at the Ilkley Literary Festival. [...]
Her passion for the subject was sparked by teachers at Harrogate Ladies’ College who helped develop her love of Sylvia Plath and the Brontë sisters. [...]
The school is planning a number of trips for literary students this year, including a trip to Wordsworth’s Lake District and the Brontë’s home in Haworth. (Claire Lomax)
Slash Film ranks 'Orson Welles' Directed Films [from] Worst To Best'. One of them is Macbeth which
suited Welles' stated intent that the film's setting should be "a perfect cross between Wuthering Heights and Bride of Frankenstein," (Kirk Boxleitner)
The blunder of the day comes courtesy of La marea (Spain):
En 1847 se publicó Cumbres Borrascosas como obra anónima. Pero, tras obtener cierto éxito, el editor decidió publicar una segunda edición tres años después. Fue entonces cuando se descubrió la verdadera identidad de su autor. Pero resultó que se trataba de una autora, Charlotte Brontë. Desde entonces la crítica de la época enfocó el libro desde una óptica distinta; comenzó a tratar la obra como una simple “novela romántica”. La que había sido considerada una “obra poderosa” y “realista”, pasó a ser un producto literario edulcorado y rosa; una obra escrita por una mujer, algo que para ellos resultaba un sacrilegio o que incumplía las reglas no escritas de la novela. (Mario Crespo) (Translation)
Finally, Dewsbury Reporter on the events at Hartshead church on Heritage Open Days last weekend.
The historic St Peter’s Church, in Hartshead, opened its registers to the public to share details of births, marriages and deaths since the late 17th century.
David Pinder (Rev Hammond Roberson), Imelda Marsden (Charlotte Brontë's teacher Margaret Wooler) and John Wallace-Jones (Patrick Brontë) (Source)

Among its more noted characters was Patrick Brontë, father of the famed literary sisters, who served as curate here in 1811, while one of the church’s most famous tales is of how he reportedly turned a blind eye to Luddite supporters burying their fallen in a corner of the graveyard, while later vicars were vehemently opposed.
Imelda Marsden, a life member of the Brontë Society who helped organise the open weekend, said it had proved a huge success with one descendent of his family among those in attendance.
Carole Fox, a cousin of Patrick’s sister Sarah, was among those who travelled to see the original registers.
“We had a super day,” said Mrs Marsden, who joined the present vicar and a number of visitors in dressing for the occasion.
   

Studying Emily Brontë's poetry and Wuthering Heights

A recent article and a dissertation:
She Walks in Haworth-A Study of Themes in Emily Brontë’s Poetry
Aihong Pi
International Journal of Higher Education Teaching Theory,  Vol.2 No.1 2021 153

As one of the most distinguished writers in the 19th century, Emily Bronte, the author of Wuthering Heights started to enjoy the reputation as one of the most  important British poetesses since the 20th century. The thesis attempts to study on the themes of Emily Brontë’s poems based on the latest development of the study of Emily Brontë and her works
Mat Puig Serradell
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 2021

This dissertation analyses the novel so as to find instances of rivalry between the author and her siblings, and samples of Emily Brontë's private life, as well as important landscape and historical moments which may have influenced her work. The formulated hypothesis was that as Emily Brontë's life was filled with tragic moments even since her childhood, the process of writing a novel may have helped her find a healing and escaping scene away from her gruesome world. This study illustrates this conflict through the characters, and, also, through one of the dearest aspects in Emily's life, the moors.

   

It could be Charlotte Brontë by Jane Eyre too

NewsDio recommends Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca (well, not exactly, you'll see) for 'rainy autumn evenings' if you love Jane Eyre.
Daphne du Maurier by Rebecca [SIC]
Love Charlotte Brontë’s, Jane Eyre? Then definitely don’t pass it by! This story is so similar to the famous classic novel that many have accused the writer of plagiarism, although the plot here is even more mysterious, so much so that the book could fall into the “thriller” category.
Our protagonist, penniless as a church mouse, meets and marries a wealthy aristocrat. And if that’s where most books end, our story just begins! Because the main character keeps feeling the looming shadow of his ex-wife Rebecca, even though she’s long gone. It is depressing and frightening, and it is up to her to solve the mystery of this overbearing and missing woman. (Danish)
Similarly, if you like the works of Charlotte Brontë, Tribune Occitanie (France) recommends the film The Remains of the Day. John C Adams Reviews and  El Salto (Spain) have articles on Jean Rhys and Wide Sargasso Sea.
   

Brontë Studies. Volume 46. Issue 4

The new issue of Brontë Studies (Volume 46 Issue 4, September 2021) is already available online. We provide you with the table of contents and abstracts:
Editorial: Thank you, Amber Adams
pp. 329-330 Author:  Patsy Stoneman

Editorial: A New Chapter for Brontë Studies
pp.  331-332  Author: Rebecca Yorke

‘What the Thunder Said’: A Note on Charlotte Brontë’s Shirley and I Timothy 2. 11–14
pp. 333-341 Author: J. R. C. Cousland
Abstract: 
Charlotte Brontë’s Shirley (1849) offers a revealing example of how she herself might interpret Scripture when she has her heroine Caroline Helstone offer an alternative reading of I Timothy 2. 11–14. Her reading is prescient in recognising the hermeneutical problems posed by the passage, but also reveals a deep-rooted dissatisfaction with the social structures that prohibit women from gaining the theological education afforded to men. Brontë’s innate conviction that women are also made in the imago dei is the propelling force in her willingness to question patriarchal narratives of Scripture.

Jane Eyre and Alexandre Dumas: a previously unknown play
pp.  342-356   Author: Patsy Stoneman & François Rahier
Abstract: 
Among the many nineteenth-century stage versions of Jane Eyre, undoubtedly the most influential was The Orphan of Lowood by Charlotte Birch-Pfeiffer. First written in German and performed in Vienna in 1853, this play was translated and performed all over Europe and America, its popularity partly due to its recasting of Rochester as a blameless philanthropic hero. The play generated its own adaptations, and among these is a previously unknown French play by Alexandre Dumas (père), written about 1858 but never performed and assumed lost until 2012. It has now been transcribed and edited by François Rahier as part of a multi-volume edition of Dumas’ theatrical works. The material on Dumas in this paper is based on François Rahier’s original research, which explains why Dumas’ play was not performed and how it was discovered after being thought lost. Comparing the Dumas play with the Birch-Pfeiffer original, and with an 1855 Belgian play which may have been an intermediate source, the paper demonstrates that Dumas greatly expands the Birch-Pfeiffer version, using material drawn directly from Charlotte Brontë’s novel, a revision which reverses Birch-Pfeiffer’s sanitization of the story. In conclusion, there is some evidence that Charlotte Brontë knew and approved of Dumas’ stage works, though she died before his Jane Eyre was drafted.

Promiscuity Instead of Inherited Insanity: Jane Eyre’s Bertha in Early Stage Adaptations
pp. 357-367  Author: Veronika Larsen
Abstract: 
Although some criticism exists regarding Jane Eyre’s character on stage, early theatrical versions of Bertha’s character are largely unexamined. In this article I offer a twofold analysis of three stage scripts based on Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847) (premiering in 1867, 1870, and 1877). I show how each play contains drastic plot changes that deemphasize Bertha’s madness in favour of rendering her a promiscuous deviant. Simultaneously, the scripts cleanse Rochester’s character of sexual and marital scandal. The emergent plot alterations ultimately polarize Bertha’s and Rochester’s moral profiles and reduce feminist aspects that we have come to associate with Charlotte Brontë’s original novel.

‘Happiness is not a potato’: Plant-Thinking in Charlotte Brontë’s Villette and The Professor
pp. 368-381 Author:  Sarah Yoon
Abstract:
This article explores the significance of plants and vegetal growth in Charlotte Brontë’s Villette (1853) and its earlier draft The Professor (1857). While the pensionnat garden is a memorable space in Villette, plants also figure as a model of thought for Brontë to explore growth, regeneration, and heterogeneity in her novel. Thinking about plants allows Brontë to explore contradictions between life and death, difference and conjunction, emotional nourishment and material vulnerability. In particular, the plant highlights the susceptibility of life-forms to external conditions, at a time when Brontë was mourning the deaths of her brother and sisters. Through reading Villette alongside Michael Marder’s philosophical book Plant-Thinking (2013), this article traces how the plant allowed Brontë to imagine inner growth during a particularly lonely period.

Sepulchral Sensuality and Heretical Heavens in Wuthering Heights and Romeo and Juliet
pp.  382-394 Author: Kathryn Colvin
Abstract:
Though the notion that comparisons might be drawn between Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights (1847) and William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet (1597) may seem readily apparent, surprisingly little academic inquiry has been conducted into the subject. This article surveys the many parallels between the two works, then explores in greater depth their similar presentations of the interplay between sexuality and death: the eroticized graves of Catherine and Juliet, Heathcliff and Romeo’s passionate exhumation attempts, and in both couples the conception of a transcendent alternative heaven figured in terms not of proximity to God, but to each other.

A Brontë Reading List: Part 13
pp.   395-413 Author: James Ogden, Peter Cook, and Sara L. Pearson 
Abstract:
This list is part of an annotated bibliography of scholarly and critical work. The earlier parts were published in Brontë Studies, 32.2 (July 2007), 33.3 (November 2008), 34.3 (November 2009), 36.4 (November 2011), 37.3 (September 2012), 39.1 (January 2014), 41.3 (September 2016), 42.4 (November 2017), 43.4 (October 2018), 44.3 (July 2019), 44.4 (October 2019), and 45.4 (October 2020).
The present part covers work published in 2018. Bibliographical details are followed where possible by summaries and assessments. Essays published in Brontë Studies are as a rule excluded, as are books reviewed in Brontë Studies; readers are directed to the publisher’s website, www.tandfonline.com, for online access. The author of each entry is indicated by the author’s initials in brackets following the entry.

Book Reviews

A Brontë Quiz Book
pp.  414 Author: Bob Duckett

‘Amid the Brave and Strong.’ The Life and Legacy of Anne Brontë
pp.  414-415 Author: Bob Duckett

House of Fiction: From Pemberley to Brideshead, Great Houses in English Literature
pp.  415-417 Author: Josephine Smith

Literature in Our Lives: Talking About Texts from Shakespeare to Philip Pullman
pp.  417-418 Author: Aparna Shastri

The Brontë Mysteries series by Bella Ellis
pp.  418-419 Author: Graham Watson

The Poems of Anne Brontë
pp.  419-421 Author: Adelle Hay

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. Anne Brontë and 200 Artists

pp.  421-422  Author: Bob Duckett
   

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