Repressed Sexuality and the Characters of "Jane Eyre" Analytical Essay

Repressed Sexuality and the Characters of "Jane Eyre"
An analysis of the female characters in Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre".
# 153906 | 2,847 words | 0 sources | 2011 | US
Published on Jun 16, 2014 in Literature (General)

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From the Paper:

"The main character in Jane Eyre is meant to represent the "good woman" of society; as a child, she is considered insolent but grows up to be a governess, later an independent woman, but this doesn't stop her from submitting to male control in her marriage to Rochester in the end. It is also no secret that one of the many enemies Jane faces over the course of the novel is Bertha Mason, the mentally ill wife of Rochester, who is locked up in his attic. Some readers view Bertha as Jane's complete opposite, with Jane being refined and lady-like and Bertha is considered to be insane and insatiable. With Bertha being considered "crazy" she is also described as beautiful and voluptuous. Bronte's description suggests that a woman who enjoys sex must have a mental illness. To put it more firmly, a person, but specifically a woman, who enjoys sex does not meet a happy ending in her mind.
"During the Victorian Era, in which Jane Eyre was written, sexuality was a very taboo subject. According to the University of Texas, sex was reserved only between married couples and for procreation only. Sex was never meant to be used to help bond the couples together; and "women were not allowed to enjoy sexual satisfaction and were often considered to be responsible for the moral decline of society if they did." (U. of Texas) A female physician named Elizabeth Blackwell first suggested this because "female's lack of sexual lust came from a fear of injury in childbirth...women were passive because men would be rushed to perform quickly, leaving them without gratification." (Joanna Watson). Sexuality wasn't always viewed this way. In the very beginning of the Victorian Era, "manuals for the use of married couples suggested using sex as a bonding technique, used for pleasure and not just procreation." (U. of Texas)"

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