Food for Thought
In Jane Eyre, authored by Charlotte Bronte, Jane is the protagonist character who undergoes struggles and successes which are consistently accompanied by hunger and physical fulfillment. Specifically, there are two instances in which Jane is subject to a troublesome predicament and her food deprived state is described. When Jane was sent off to the boarding school in Lowood and when she abruptly leaves her position as a governess to flee from Mr. Rochester, Jane’s pain is expressed through her physical hunger. In both instances, Jane is found in a vulnerable state, and her physical hunger is described. In each case throughout the novel, when food is mentioned, a different internal vacancy within Jane is being fulfilled; whether it is an emotional uplift, an intellectual stimulation, or simply a loving companionship. *
When Jane leaves her Aunt’s home to her boarding school in Lowood, she experiences pain, abandonment, along with extreme stages of hunger. Jane’s sense of abandonment is clearly shown when she accidentally drops her slate and Mr. Brocklehurst labels her as careless. Her intense feeling of desertion is felt when Mr. Brocklehurst stands her on a stool and pronounces her a liar to the entire institution at Lowood. Jane’s desolation is expressed when she says, “There was I, then, mounted aloft; I, who had said I could not bear the shame of standing on my natural feet in the middle of the room, was now exposed to general view on a pedestal of infamy.” The lack of food at Lowood is stated earlier, “Then the scanty supply of food was distressing: with the keen appetites of growing children, we had scarcely sufficient to keep alive a delicate invalid.” The association of hunger and abandonment is apparent at Lowood, as Jane’s poor nutrition is described, along with her lack of companionship at the new school. *
Subsequently in the novel, Jane experiences lack of companionship again when she leaves...
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