1. Why Do You Think Emily Bronte Chose to Unfold the Story Through the Secondary Sources of Ellen’s Narrative, Mr. Lockwood’s Two Visits, and Catherine’s Diary? How Would the Story Have Differed If It Had Been Told

Topics: Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë, Ralph Fiennes Pages: 2 (437 words) Published: September 9, 2012
By unfolding the story through secondary sources, Emily Bronte creates curiosity in the reader’s mind, causing them to wonder as to the events which occurred before Lockwood’s arrival at Thrushcross Grange. Lockwood’s narrative causes readers to enter the story when the majority of events have already taken place. By having the secondary source of Lockwood read from Catherine’s diary, the reader is given a glimpse of the events which led to Heathcliff’s demeanor. ‘I wish my father were back again. Hindley is a detestable substitute-his conduct to Heathcliff is atrocious’ The reader is indirectly introduced to two additional characters; Catherine’s father and Hindley. As Hindley’s conduct to Heathcliff has been described as ‘atrocious’, the reader is led to wonder as to what may have occurred to shape him into the man he is when the reader is first introduced to him. ‘H. and I are going to rebel’ yet again, the reader becomes curious to find out what action Heathcliff and the as of yet unknown Catherine took and what, if any, repercussions came about as a result. Had the story been told chronologically, the linear progression of events would not have had the same air of mystery- had it been clear early on that Catherine was able to truthfully say ‘I am Heathcliff’, Heathcliff’s obsession with her would not have puzzled or interested the reader in the same way. By presenting the aftermath of Heathcliff’s obsession for revenge, and progressively providing the reader a frame to use through which to view the incarnation of Heathcliff we are first shown. Although the story is told as a flashback, the fact that Lockwood interacts with the other characters already calls his objectivity into question; the reception he received at Wuthering Heights was certainly not the most promising. ‘His [Heathcliff’s] attitude at the door appeared to demand my speedy entrance, or complete departure’ This is critical to note, as what Lockwood is recounting is not Nelly’s version of...
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