It is fair to say that the quote “Victorian reviewers were disturbed not so much by the proud Byronic sexual energy of Rochester as by the pride and passion of Jane” is in fact true as displayed by the theme of independence and social prominence in the novel Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.
It is undeniable to call Edward Rochester a Byronic hero. A Byronic hero is a character who demonstrates characteristics of a hero, yet is still flawed like a human. In chapter 27 Jane truly demonstrates her pride and passion while Rochester demonstrates his Byronic sexual energy. Jane is torn between what she wants and what she thinks is right. Rochester is determined to make Jane his and all the emotional turmoil got Jane sick to the point where she couldn’t even stand. Rochester continues to display Byronic sexual energy and imposes himself on her by indirectly threatening to force himself upon her sexually if she did not accept his proposal.
The reason why Victorian reviewers were disturbed more by the pride and passion of Jane as opposed to the Byronic sexual energy of Rochester is because of Jane’s response to his threat. Jane does not seem afraid and keeps her emotions controlled. In the Victorian era a strong female protagonist who was not afraid of such things as rape especially by a man superior in stature was unheard of. When Jane begins to cry a little bit, Rochester almost in a way tries to justify his behavior and almost apologize. This shows how Jane has gained the power in the relationship. Worldly men with money were expected to act in such a manner as to threaten to sexually impose themselves on women of an inferior social status especially in Victorian literature with a Byronic hero so this was not found as a shock. However a younger female with no money was not supposed to have power and influence such as Jane did. This startled Victorian reviewers because the pride and passion of Jane was something never seen before.
It is undeniable that Victorian...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document