What is the Victorian attitude to love and how is it presented or rejected in 3 literature texts

Topics: Marriage, Love, Victorian era Pages: 3 (2314 words) Published: January 25, 2015
What is the Victorian attitude to love and how is it presented or rejected in 3 literature texts? During the Victorian Era, it was generally accepted that love was not a case of the modern, romantic ideal of falling for someone you genuinely love, but more of a career move. Men especially saw marriage as a stepping stone in their life, to advance in society. Women were treated as property and their sole purpose was to sacrifice themselves to their husbands. The typical Victorian woman was expected to bear her husband children, to ensure her family’s happiness, to be suppressed and to show minimal emotion. Hence, true love was not as common as present day, especially for the upper class, who were being constantly being scrutinised by society. These attitudes are explored in ‘Jude the Obscure’, ‘Sonnet VI’ from Sonnets from the Portuguese, and ‘Jane Eyre’. The main attitude towards love in Victorian society was that it was a career move for men, and a way for a woman to secure her position in life and the security of her children. Hence it was important to put love last to marry well, as your future depended on it. The Victorian novel ‘Jude the obscure’ partially rejects this idea. In the case of Jude’s marriage to Arabella, although there was some original attraction, due to Arabella’s flirtatious nature, Jude quickly realises that Arabella is not the one for him. However before he can break up with her, she tells him she is pregnant, and therefore he marries her, as it is the only noble thing to do. Again in Sue’s marriage to Mr. Phillotson, it is not a career move. Phillotson is deeply in love with Sue, however his love is requited, and Sue only loves him as a friend. However, perhaps as a reaction to Jude confessing that he was married to Arabella, Sue acts rashly and marries Phillotson. In both cases, the main objective of the marriages where not to progress in society, but on the other hand, neither were because of love either, therefore this attitude...
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