What Methods Does Emily Bronte Use to Reveal a Contrast Between the Characters of Lockwood and Heathcliff in the Opening Chapter of Wuthering Heights?

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  • Topic: Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights, Novel
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What methods does Emily Bronte use to reveal a contrast between the characters of Lockwood and Heathcliff in the opening chapter of Wuthering heights?

The main method that Bronte used to highlight how different Lockwood and Heathcliff are is the structure of the novel, namely the fact that it’s an epistolary novel. This means that the readers are being led through the book by the diary entrances of Lockwood, effectively emphasizing the contrast between him and Heathcliff as he shares his opinions of Heathcliff. Moreover I believe that the two characters are contrasted even more due to the fact that Lockwood is an outsider, entering the home of Heathcliff. This is effective because it allows the readers to meet Heathcliff’s character at the same time as Lockwood and really feel the awkward relationship that they have. Bronte effectively uses dialogue to show that these two characters have dissimilar personalities, if not opposite. Heathcliff uses short, snappy speech as opposed to elongated words or elegant sentences. This may symbolise his unfriendliness or hostility at the situation he’s presented with, where he must be courteous towards Lockwood as not to seem rude. In fact, at the very beginning of the book when Lockwood calls him by name ‘a nod was the answer’ The fact that he didn’t even utter a greeting upon meeting someone new proves that Bronte wanted his speech to represent his character: abrupt and unwilling to communicate. In contrast it can be said that Lockwood uses elevated lexis and communicates in a clearer manner. Bronte may have done this to represent his pompous and stuck up attitude. His speech defines they way he thinks of the situation too: as if he’s above it all and Heathcliff should be delighted to have him as a guest. Also Bronte may have done this to simply contrast Lockwood’s long sentences to Heathcliff’s short, to-the-point sentences. Also their speech may be different due to the fact that Lockwood is from the south of...
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