21 November 2014
According to Marian Hirsch’s essay, “The Novel of Formation as Genre,” a bildungsroman novel tells the story of how a young individual grows and develops “within the context of a defined social order.” This definition of a bildungsroman novel clearly applies to Charlotte Brontë’s eponymous novel published in 1847. As an orphan, Jane Eyre grows and develops through her conflicts and crises at Gateshead Hall, Lowood, and Thornfield Hall. Jane Eyre, an orphan, lives at Gateshead Hall where she is abused by the Reed family. She is traumatized by the way she is treated there, and is unaccepted by them. For example when she is reading (add title) her cousin John Reed tells her that she is worthless, and that she puts her torture, and misery on herself: “You have no money; your faith left your none; you ought to beg” (12). The Reed family is the start of all her problems, and her needing for more compassion. She is pushed around for just being in the existence at Gateshead Hall. Her torment, and abuse made her a very strong head woman who just wanted to feel loved, and needed somewhere. After Gateshead Hall Jane is sent to Lowood, an orphanage for young girls. Jane believes the orphanage will be a refugee for her, and she wouldn’t be secluded from ones her own age. She hopes she could be normal at Lowood because everyone is just like, an orphan. When she arrives at Lowood she realizes Lowood is more strict then Gateshead Hall. Only at Lowood she is befriended by Helen Burns. Jane thinks of all teachers as evil, but Jane is her support. Jane says to Jane, “Cruel? Not at all! She is severe; she dislikes my fault” (48). She explains to Jane that it is not just her who is picked on. All the young girls there are treated worthless, and that she is not secluded from everyone else, and that all the girls are just terrified of the teachers as much as she is.