A Person of Love and Death
Wuthering Heights is story which is cold but full of passion. Even though, the main topic of this novel is love, feminism is another theme. In Victorian time, the whole society opposed indulgence,respected traditions and promoted ethics. In that society, women should be honest and behave loyal to the virtues of the family.
Catherine Earnshaw is a typical example in feminism. In Wuthering Heights，she was young she was unruly growing up; after she grew up she actively pursued her own love，after being a wife and mother, she was willing to die instead of struggle in a loveless marriage. We can see her rebellion of the patriarchy in this story making her unlike traditional women in that time.
Catherine is not willing to be propagated as a “family angel” by patriarchal ideas, whereas, she rejected women’s roles in the traditional patriarchy. Here is a clear implication when she interprets her heaven dream to Nelly, “I was going to stay that heaven did not seem to be my home”(p58) and when she dreamt that angels flung her out to the heath on the top of Wuthering Heights,she burst into crying for joy. Wuthering Heights once became Catherine’s heaven, which as a “female country” corresponded to a “patriarchal kingdom”. In here, she can be an independent and individual. In the beginning of this novel, her diaries include all of her information,she wrote in her faded hieroglyphics, “ Hindley is a detestable substitute-his conduct to Heathcliff is atrocious-H and I are going to rebel-we took our initiatory step this evening.I could not bear the employment. I took my dingy volume by the scroop, and hurled it into the dog-kennel,vowing I hated a good book”(p15). All of these send us a message that Catherine is a uninhibited girl full of rebellious spirit.
Meanwhile, there is a detail in Nally’s narrative when Mr. Earnshaw asked his little daughter what he should bring to her in Liverpool and Cathy named a whip. At that time, she was hardly six but she could ride any horse in the stable. Nally’s interpretation reveals that Catherine longed for ruling all the horses in the stable, nevertheless this is just the surface. This detail tells us again that Catherine is wild and wayward, which suggests that she desires for more power. In Catherine’s inside, she wants to manipulate her own destiny, that’s why she likes to act as a mistress and commands her companions. She is a fairly sober and wise girl, at least, she knows what she wants, she knows that she dosen’t want to be controlled by her brother and father. Certainly, Nelly said she never saw a child act with Catherine’s way before. Nelly says “She defying us with her bold, saucy look and her ready words; turning Joseph’s religious curse into ridicule, baiting me and just doing what her father hated most, showing how her pretended insolence, which he thought real, had more power over Heathcliff than his kindness” (p31)I think, in a certain sense, Heathcliff as a outside energy helps Catherine get what she desires, exceedingly, in her deep mind－power.She shows off how Heathcliff is willing to obey her biding in anything. To get others’ obedience, she becomes more and more rebellious against patriarchal and religions. On Mr.Earnshaw’s last night, he asked his daughter “ ‘why cants thou not always be a good lass, Cathy?’ and she turned her face up to his, and laughed, and answered ‘ why can’t you always be a good man, father?’” (p31) Her rhetorical question, no doubt, shows a rebellious state of mind, meanwhile, she has her own standard for “good man”. In her young age, her wild and boorish attitudes are shown incisively and vividly.
The love affair between Catherine and Heathcliff is still a classic in world literature. They love each other dearly, the intense and fervent feelings beyond most of love. In Catherine’s mind, Heathcliff has the same soul as her, even more, Heathcliff’s is more than she is. She loves Heathcliff even though all of the people...
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