Language and Imagery in Wuthering Heights

Topics: Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë, Catherine Earnshaw Pages: 2 (722 words) Published: October 17, 2013
In Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte uses Language and imagery to create a very stark contrast between Heathcliff, and Edgar Linton. This contrast is not only illustrated in how these characters act, but also in their appearance, usual setting and the language that is used to describe them. Emily Bronte first uses the raw basics of the characters Heathcliff and Edgar Linton to right away let us know that these characters are polar opposites. She does this with the imagery of both characters. In chapter 7, Heathcliff describes Edgar as having light skin and fair hair, whereas in the same chapter it is mentioned that Heathcliff has dark hair and dark skin. This use of binary opposites suggests to the reader already, that Heathcliff and Edgar are complete opposites, right down to their core. This use of Binary opposites and imagery is also applied to where Heathcliff and Edgar live, Edgar living in Thrushcross Grange, the light, large house, and Heathcliff living in the dark, gloomy and sinister house of Wuthering Heights. This imagery of the two houses reflects the characters of the two men. Language is also used effectively and in abundance by Bronte to illustrate the two characters differences. Bronte uses contrasting Lexical fields pertaining to heaven and hell to not only show the contrast in character between Heathcliff and Edgar, but to suggest that one is good and one is evil. For instance Heathcliff is constantly being described as or being referred to with the use of words which relate to hell. His eyes are described as ‘devils spies’ and ‘ dark fiends’ by Nelly, and coupled with his appearance of being dark skinned and haired, he is closely associated with the devil, who represents evil. Edgar on the other hand, is described with a lexical field of a more heavenly nature....
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