Sunday, April 03, 2016

Writer Joanna Moorhead and her daughter explore the legacy of Charlotte Brontë in an article for Mail on Sunday:
Charlotte Brontë’s vow to stay true to herself – in both love and ambition – has been a lifelong inspiration to writer Joanna Moorhead. Here she explains why – on the 200th anniversary of Charlotte’s birth – the novelist is just as relevant to young women today. (...)
I can’t remember exactly when I met her, but this much I know: as soon as we became acquainted I was aware how much my new friend Charlotte was going to mean to me. We had so much in common.
Like her, I went to an all-girls boarding school, a place that often seemed cut off from the rest of humanity.
Like her, I had been bereaved as a child.
Like her, I wasn’t always popular; I often felt a bit of an outsider, just as she did.
Like her, my family lived on a windswept moor – in the same remote area of Yorkshire where she had spent almost all her life.
And like her, I knew from an early age that the thing I wanted most, in the whole world, was to be a published writer.
The fact that she lived two centuries before me never seemed a drawback; Charlotte Brontë spoke to me, as clearly as if she had been sitting beside me in my classroom.
This month sees the bicentenary of Charlotte Bronte’s birth; and never in her wildest dreams could she have guessed that two centuries on she would be a global literary superstar
Through her novels, especially Jane Eyre, I knew her voice; it was strong and true and, most importantly, surprisingly modern.
There I was, in the middle of the 1970s, stuck on Donny Osmond, the Bay City Rollers, Abba and…Charlotte Brontë.
And what is perhaps most delightful about my long connection with the vicar’s daughter from Haworth is that she has turned out to be just as much of a role model to my own four daughters, 40 years on. (Read more)
The Wichita Eagle reviews Claire Harman's Charlotte Brontë biography:
Harman does a yeoman’s job of summarizing and analyzing Charlotte’s remarkable life. She assumes that her readers are familiar with “Jane Eyre,” but a sketch of the novel at some point would have been helpful. Harman’s strength is in probing Charlotte’s letters to delve deep within her mental state, which was always more comfortable and fruitful in her rich imagination than in the poverty of the real world at Haworth. There, she dealt with her father’s neglect and eventual decline in health. She resigned herself to accepting the courtship of Arthur Nicholls, who genuinely loved her and took her to his native Ireland for their honeymoon. But once again, reality was no match for the yearning heart.
Much has been written about the Brontës, their severe unconventionality, their almost occult artistic talents. Harman gives us a fresh perspective on the most gifted daughter of the family. We see her struggles for equality, for literary excellence and for fuel for her fiery heart. That she succeeded as well as she did is a triumph of the will. In showing us the ravages of that struggle, Harman’s biography is more than equal to the task – warm, erudite and accessible, echoing that beating heart to the bitter end. (Arlice Davenport)
The Observer traces a profile of PJ Harvey:
A second album, Rid of Me, came before she launched a solo career, teaming up again with Parish and adopting a captivating series of stage personas, sometimes appearing as a pantomime version of a gothic rock chick, sometimes in Victorian garb, as a sort of Jane Eyre governess crossed with the mad woman in the attic (a Brontë reference possibly denoting the legacy of Kate Bush). (Vanessa Thorpe)
Scroll.in (India) lists books you should read before writing your own:
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Jane Eyre is a coming-of-age story that depicts the frailties of human beings as seen through the eyes of an orphaned English girl. While all the novels written by the Brontë sisters (Emily, Anne and Charlotte) are legendary, this one in particular has grown in its appeal in recent years.
That’s thanks to the prose, which is evocative and subversive, and the way it addresses themes like love, relationships, gender stereotypes, religion and social classes with deep compassion and tenderness. The novel shows us an old-fashioned away of telling a story, and that’s often the best starting point: you have to know the rules before you can break them.
For a first-time author who wants to master the art of storytelling and create unforgettable characters, this novel is a must read. (Vani)
MSN lists romantic movies:
Jane Eyre 2011
The film, based on the classic novel by Charlotte Brontë, is directed by Cary Fukunaga and stars Mia Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender. The story revolves around a young girl who falls in love with her employer, but with time she realizes that he has some grave secrets.
Le Monde (France) interviews the writer Annie Ernaux:
Quels sont vos premiers souvenirs marquants de lecture ? (Sandrine Blanchard)
(...) « Jane Eyre » de Charlotte Brontë m’a aussi beaucoup marquée. Ce livre à la première personne est comme un fil rouge de l’existence. Il s’agit, là encore, de vivre une vie d’indépendance, sans domination. Ces modèles-là m’ont structurée.
Preguiça Magazine (Portugal) includes a short story by Mónia Camacho, Madalena with a Jane Eyre mention;  a local talent show won singing Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights in The Bromsgrove Standard; Cada vez que te leo... (in Spanish) and My Novels, My World review Wuthering Heights; Sheferijm - Ajatuksia kirjoista! (in Finnish) proposes a Brontë200 challenge for bloggers;

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