Essay on Wuthering Heights - Two Women, Two Sides of the Same Coin

Words: 1274
Pages: 6

Jordan smith
EGL120 Essay

Student ID: 1051867
Word Count:

“Identify and discuss various representations of woman in Wuthering Heights”

The depictions of women in Wuthering Heights reveal that despair and happiness are direct outcomes of one’s decision to either be submissive to or oppose patriarchal constructs respectively. Catherine and Cathy II are portrayed as examples of both how giving power to patriarchal demands leads to misery and pain in contrast to how resisting patriarchal demands will lead to hope and joy. Firstly, the underlying theme of freedom illuminates how the women are influenced to make such critical decisions regarding their respective futures. Secondly, the concept of upbringing illustrates how childhood,
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By the end of the novel, Cathy II achieves freedom and is shown to be heading towards a hopeful and happy future, in stark contrast to Catherine, and establishes herself as a true heroine (Kramer-Linkin, 2000: 338). The theme of freedom reveals how when both women are giving the opportunity to either assist or resist patriarchy, their exposure to and perceptions of freedom influence their decisions and maps out how assisting patriarchy results in a miserable ending, and resisting it leads to a happy one.

The concept of upbringing helps to understand how the women of Wuthering Heights come to make the decisions they do and dictate how their choices will decide whether or not they find happiness. Upbringing is demonstrated several times in the novel as being a key factor in developing the nature’s and decision-making processes of both Catherine and Cathy II (Carroll, 2008: 242). Textural evidence of upbringing shaping Catherine takes place in the transition between chapters six and seven, when she begins to follow societal norms and behave more ladylike (Bronte, 1847: 36-38), showing how she restrains her natural urges by showing distaste for getting dirty and behaving in an uncouth manner. These two different childhood influences cause Catherine to be torn when weighing up Edgar’s proposal, to the point where she initially naively plans to split her love between the two men (REFERENCE). Thus, Catherine’s