Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday, July 21, 2017 11:36 am by M. in , , , ,    No comments
The Guardian's Country Diary visits North Lees Hall:
Organic forces take over Brontë's land of secrets (...)
The rain started as I crossed the pasture above North Lees Hall, the model, it is widely accepted, for Thornfield Hall in Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane Eyre. It’s a house the author visited more than once, staying with her friend Ellen Nussey in nearby Hathersage, and the intertwining of the names – thorn being an anagram of north and lee derived from the Anglo-Saxon for field – coupled with the detailed description Brontë gives, are persuasive. (...)
History is not so much layered here as crammed in, like old furniture in an attic, along with Mrs Rochester. In the woods, above a clearing, cupped behind a high retaining wall buried in creepers like some lost Inca ruin, was a chocolate-brown pool overhung with alder and oak. It was long and crescent shaped. The only sound was drops falling off the leaves and rippling the surface. (...)
The pond was built to power a lead smelting works, probably in the early 18th century. In the 1840s, when Brontë visited, the site was being used as a paper factory. Now it felt somewhere wholly organic, reclaimed. (Ed Douglas)
Feminism in India explores Bertha Mason's character in Jane Eyre:
Jane Eyre is a progressive book in many senses – far ahead of its time, it is even deemed feminist. As she lived in a time when women were not encouraged to write, Charlotte Brontë wrote under the pseudonym Currer Bell to avoid being ostracized by society, and to avoid being badly received by the audience because the book was written by a ‘woman’.
Jane Eyre revolves around the life of a simple, ‘plain’ yet intelligent, orphaned girl who struggles with internal and external battles before she comes to accept that she loves her employer Mr Rochester, who is double her age, and from an upper class background. Her life turns upside down when she discovers, right before her wedding, that her lover has an ex-wife, a madwoman hidden in the attic, and flees – narrowly escaping from committing to a sinful relationship. Eventually, the madwoman, Bertha Mason, commits suicide, and Jane marries Mr Rochester.
Sure, Jane is a groundbreaking, rebellious character in literature and has been talked about everywhere, but in this article we will analyze the one character, which even though is absolutely essential to the plot, has no representation of her own – a character that has been termed ‘mad’, ‘violent’, and ‘crazy’. No prizes for guessing who! Bertha Mason, despite being so important to the plot of the story, interestingly does not have a single dialogue in her part. Over the course of the decade where Jane speaks of her life with Rochester, not once does Bertha speak. (Read more) (Ismat Ara)
The East Hampton Star talks about Elizabeth Doyle Carey and Carrie Doyle. You know authors and sisters...
“Literature cannot be the business of a woman’s life,” the poet laureate Robert Southey informed Charlotte Brontë when she sent him her poems, along with her sibling Anne’s writing, to critique. The Brontës went on, quite efficiently, to make it their business. (Judy D'Mello)
 A quite random Brontë mention in Poughkeepsie Journal:
When I was younger, my goal was to own a sprawling Victorian mansion. Perhaps it was because Samantha was my American Girl doll of choice or perhaps it was because I read the Brontë sisters a few too many times, but I often used to dream of a multitiered estate to call my own. (Sabrina Sucato)
The Arizona Republic reviews the film Lady Macbeth:
Katherine (Florence Pugh) is married off to a cold brute and sent to live at an estate set in a landscape as desolate and wild as Brontë’s moors. There, Katherine lives in isolation with little more to keep her company than no-nonsense house servant Anna (Naomi Ackie), who harshly rakes the tangles from her hair and offers little comfort. (Barbara VanDenburgh)
The International News (Pakistan) quotes Charlotte Brontë on self-esteem:
Self-appreciation is also something you might miss out by being among people other than yourself. You may have countless people complimenting you, but at the end of the day, you need that assurance from none other than yourself. This is aptly summed up by Charlotte Brontë who said: “I care for myself. The more solitary, the more friendless, the more unsustained I am, the more I will respect myself.” (Rabia Tufail)
A curious article on Catholic Stand on the Holy Trinity and... Tristan and Isolde:
You may remember that in Wuthering Heights, Catherine Linton’s love for Heathcliff was so great that she said, “I don’t love Heathcliff, I am Heathcliff.” In other words, she wanted to enter into him more fully and more completely than their human bodies allowed, and remain there forever. She was not so much saying what had happened, but what she desired to happen more than anything else. She wanted to lose herself in him and wanted him to lose himself in her. You find the same idea in the story of Tristan and Isolde. When the two reached the heights of human love, their union was so sublime that at one moment Tristan actually calls Isolde, Tristan and Isolde call Tristan, Isolde. (David Torkington)
Entertaniment Weekly publishes an excerpt from You Play The Girl by Carina Chocano:
One gray and freezing Sunday afternoon, my mom drops us off at the crappy mall, where the movie [Flashdance] has washed up after ending its run at the fancy mall. My naked longing to see this movie again makes me feel self-conscious. Standing in the empty parking lot on this dreary and windy day, I’m not quite Jane Eyre; maybe more like Cathy in the Pat Benatar version of Kate Bush’s tribute to Wuthering Heights. All at once, I’m overcome with a shame so bilious I think I’ll dissolve into the asphalt. I’m fifteen, but I’m not stupid. I know this is a terrible movie. I know it’s a lie from start to finish. But it’s a lie I very badly want to believe in.
Addicted to follow in love? Your Tango has some ways to know it:
7. You're bored by the thought of stability.
A calm and easy bond built on affection, trust, support — a partnership — well, that sounds like a commercial for a family car I don't want to drive.
I tell myself I want that stuff (or should want that stuff), but my brain lingers on the idea that every day should be a passionate tumult, a Heathcliff and Catherine affair: doomed but like your heart will be ripped out if you're not together. (I even once told aforementioned love object that "Don't we all just want that Wuthering Heights sh*t?" Surprisingly, to me, some people don't and are probably happier for it.) (B.A. Marvell)
LitHub has some pieces of advice for your wedding toast:
Do not read anything from Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, Romeo and Juliet, or Twilight, despite the fact that they are Very Famous Romantic Novels. Read: dude keeps his old wife in the attic! Vindictive ex-boyfriend corrupts a woman’s son for revenge! Obnoxious teenagers can’t wait five minutes without killing themselves! Stupid sparkly vampires! You don’t want to invoke that shit on your wedding day—even if the part you read is like, so romantic. (Emily Temple)
Vijesti (Montenegro) discusses the Serbian adaptation of Wuthering Heights now on stage in Bar (Montenegro):
“Ispisan i sastavljen od višestrukih narativa, kontradiktornih ili prije hibridnih žanrovskih odrednica, kao omaž strastima i sa jednom i više nego sadržajnom tematikom koja obiluje romantičarskim, okeanskim osjećanjima, ne dozvoljavaju da ga ukalupimo u još jednu ljubavnu priču. Štaviše, izgleda da je tačna procjena Martina Ketla o 'Orkanskim visovima' za koje kaže da, ukoliko ih želimo posmatrati samo kao ljubavni priču, onda na Šekspirovog „Hamleta“ možemo gledati kao na neku vrstu sitkoma”, rečeno je na promociji.
Čini se da je Emili Bronte kroz “Orkanske visove” demistifikovala i razotkrila sve ono podrazumijevano o onom ljudskom, isuviše ljudskom i upravo tu leži njena moć - ona je oslobodila život od činjenica, i svih naših sviknutih poluistina o ljubavima, strahovima, mržnjama, kajanju i iskupljenju, ali i mnogim drugim emocijama i fenomenu. Stela Mišković na promociji nije htjela govoriti mnogo o pisanju prve balkanske dramatizacije ovog, kako je kazala, za dramatizaciju izuzetno potentnog, ali i kompleksnog romana, prije nego što publika bude imala priliku da pogleda predstavu. Ipak, istakla je da je dugo razmišljala o tome šta će biti idejna okosnica predstave, po je tako u toku procesa došla do teme izbora koje pravimo, dosljednosti kojom stojimo iza njih, načina na koji prihvatamo svoje i tuđe izbore. To ju je potom dovelo i do teme malograđanštine koja joj je poslužila kao spona sa današnjicom, što predstavu čini aktuelnom. Mišković je kazala i da je za ovu priliku radila tzv. filmsku dramaturgiju koja podrazumijeva nizanje kratkih, kroki scena koje omogućavaju ukidanje jedinstva prostora i vremena. (Translation)
La Croix (Belgium) talks about holidays and summer in the Brontës:
L’été sera assurément festif à Haworth cette année, avant un été encore plus spécial l’an prochain, le 30 juillet 2018 voyant le bicentenaire de la naissance d’Emily Brontë. En cette période plus encore que toute l’année, nombre de touristes et aficionados affluent dans le petit village du Yorkshire où les sœurs Brontë écrivirent parmi les plus grands chefs-d’œuvre de la littérature mondiale.
Si on imagine plus volontiers l’atmosphère locale en automne et en hiver, la lande battue par les vents, la saison d’été permettait de belles sorties à ces grandes marcheuses, par exemple à la petite cascade située à mi-chemin de la ferme de Top Withens qui aurait inspiré Emily pour Hurlevent.
La correspondance de la famille, traduite en français cette année, montre qu’elles aspiraient à s’échapper du village, mais devaient se résoudre, plutôt que voyager, à tenir la maison ou travailler comme préceptrices. Charlotte l’exprime en ce mois de juillet 1839 où, libérée de ses obligations auprès de la famille Sidgwick qui l’employait, elle rêve d’aller au bord de la mer, sur la côte est du Yorkshire, seule avec sa meilleure amie Ellen Nussey. (Sabine Audrerle) (Translation)
Some late appearances of the Austen vs Brontë fever:
Algo en las novelas de Austen las hace amenas y entrañables. No empalagan con cursilería o el dramatismo de las novelas de las hermanas Brontë. Nada extraordinario ocurre y sin embargo, Austen hace gozar intensamente su descripción de la vida cotidiana en bosques de la provincia británica. (Raudel Ávila in La Razón) (Translation)
The Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFadyen version of Pride and Prejudice caught my eye. I’d read the book years ago, but connected more with the brooding loneliness of Jane Eyre than any of Austen’s wealthy and silly single girls. (Marisa Johnson in The Atlantic)
It is a truth universally acknowledged: Austen was not a romantic, like the Brontës. A clear realist and ironist, she's all in for restraint and order, morals and manners. The passionate Brontë sister-writers can have their wild moors, wuthering heights and Heathcliff — even a madwoman in the attic — but Austen liked emotions buttoned up in British fashion. (Jamie Stiehm in Creators)
[Virginia] Woolf elegantly unplucks the writing careers of a number of these now celebrated authors, including Jane Austen, who she argues is successful because although she may not be as fine a writer as Charlotte Brontë, she is more successful because she is one of the first women authors who writes unashamedly as a woman, exploring settings and themes she understands (and are considered trivial by men) rather than being constrained by the rules of fiction put in place by the long history of male writers. Charlotte Brontë, she argues, at times allows her own anger, her authorial voice, to intrude. (Jenni Ogden in Psychology Today)
Pulso (Chile) has an article about a terrible attempted femicide and quotes Jane Eyre:
En estos momentos hay dos mujeres, de distintas épocas y países, que están presentes en mi mente. Una es Jane Eyre, ese entrañable personaje del siglo XIX de la novela de Charlotte Brontë. Una mujer que en su época trata de mantener la independencia económica, sin menospreciar un trabajo como profesora en una humilde escuela rural, aun cuando antes había accedido a un empleo de nivel considerado superior para esa época como institutriz en una casa aristocrática. Para ella, tener un lugar y una posibilidad de sostenerse a sí misma son suficientes motivos de agradecimiento. Leyendo este libro se comprende por qué los clásicos son clásicos: porque además de estar magistralmente escritos, penetran el alma humana siendo capaces de transmitir su esencia con sus debilidades y grandezas y ese anhelo de trascendencia que está -en algunos más, en otros menos- en todos latente.
Jane Eyre no está dispuesta -y eso es lo sorprendente en el siglo en el cual fue escrito- a transar su dignidad ni su independencia por regalías -joyas, vestidos, mansiones…- ni aun cuando sean de parte del hombre a quien tanto quiere. Descarta ser otra más como tantas mujeres de su época que anhelan “casarse bien”. Eso hace que Mr. Rochester -un aristócrata difícil de carácter pero noble en su esencia- se enamore de ese espíritu: por su clara identidad, por su consecuencia. El amor que hay entre ellos es tan auténtico que -y aquí quien no ha leído aún el libro que no continúe leyendo esta columna- finalmente los dos se reencuentran, pero no en un ambiente bucólico, sino con un Mr. Rochester ciego, por haber tratado de salvar de un incendio a sus trabajadores y con su mansión en ruinas por las llamas. Belleza absoluta este final. (Francisca Jünneman) (Translation)
The Eastern Daily Press informs that a Jane Eyre performance in Norwich was cancelled due to cast sickness. EDIT: Fortunately it was just a one-day-thing. Next week, as the Yorkshire Evening Post reports, the production will be in Leeds. A Jeopardy winner who happens to be curious about Jane Eyre in Kitchissippi Times. The Brussels Brontë Blog has a fascinating post on German Brontë falsifications.

Finally, we just love this award in the MyStudySyncTV contest
The results are in for our 2016-2017 MyStudySyncTV contest. This marks our 4th annual contest in which we asked students to produce their own version of our signature StudySync®TV or SkillsTV videos, modeling student-led literary discussion groups on texts and skills within StudySync.
To create these award-winning episodes, teams of students developed essay prompts and scripts, planned props and video effects, and acted in their own unique episodes. Each year, StudySync not only recognizes the Top Middle School and High School Productions, but also gives accolades for Best Actor and Actress. (...)
Best Actress in a High School production:
Starring in the outstanding MyStudySyncTV submission on Jane Eyre’s novel Wuthering Heights, congratulations Sarah Mozden! (Diane Cadogan)


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