Jane Eyre Passage Analysis

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“‘I could bend her with my finger and thumb: and what good would it do if I bent, if I uptore, if I crushed her? Consider that eye: consider the resolute, wild, free things looking out of it, defying me, with more than courage—with a stern triumph. Whatever I do with its cage, I cannot get at it—the savage, beautiful creature! If I tear, if I rend the slight prison, my outrage will only let the captive loose. Conqueror I might be of the house; but the inmate would escape to heaven before I could call myself of its clay dwelling-place. And it is you, spirit—with will and energy, and virtue and purity—that I want: not alone your brittle frame. Of yourself you could come with soft flight and nestle against my heart, if you would: seized against your will, you will elude the grasp like essence…’” Pg. 367

Throughout the novel, ever since she was a child, Jane had longed for love, acceptance and belonging from the people in her life. At Thornfield, Jane has finally found someone who loves and cherishes her fervently. Jane discovered that Mr. Rochester covered up his marital status and she felt betrayed and hurt by his deceit. After deciding unbendingly to leave Thornfield and Mr. Rochester behind, in this passage, Jane bids farewell to her master though Rochester continuously pleads for her to stay. From Rochester’s speech, he finally realizes that Jane is not going to yield to his wishes from her indomitable manner, but he still yearned for her to be by his side. Rochester passionately uses anaphora to emphasize that no matter how he implored Jane to stay, he vested no power over her. Besides Jane’s thirst for approval from others, another motif in the book is that she submits to no one and sacrifices her principles for nothing, such as her rejecting St. John’s proposal of marriage. Rochester juxtaposes the Jane that loved and treasured him to the Jane that repulsed and broke free of his love with an image of a “resolute, wild, free” and triumphant creature that...
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