Friday, February 21, 2020

Penguin asks journalist and broadcaster Ash Sarkar about the 'five books that made her and one of them is Jane Eyre.
The first time I read Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, I did that thing that all 12-year-olds do, which was think: ‘oh my god, I’m just like Jane Eyre, because I’m not that pretty, but maybe I have a moral fortitude and an intellectual capacity that sets me apart and I wish someone would see it!’ A few years later, when I met my step dad’s family in Yorkshire for the first time, it helped me make sense of the landscape, how it was cold and blustery, with hills everywhere and no Tube station.
I was definitely one of those schoolyard Gloria Steinems: ‘What do you mean I have to wear a uniform that reaches the knee? This is so oppressive!’. I don’t look like Jane Eyre, but I shared her sense of dissatisfaction with the social order. Later, I realised that, as a woman of colour, I actually felt a lot more like Bertha, the wife hidden upstairs. (Sam Parker)
Brigham Young University's Scroll tells about a recent talk on Jane Eyre.
Kayla Probeyahn, an adjunct faculty member in the English department, spoke about this semester’s Big Read pick, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë. Students listened to her speak about the feminist imagination in Brontë’s novel.
Her focus was on imagination and what it meant to Brontë in her time. Probeyahn explained that imagination was more of a moral power to imagine a better world. She looked at what this meant for Jane’s journey of self-discovery.
As he spoke, some students stopped writing notes completely in order to watch Probeyahn as she talked. She was inspired by William Woodsworth, an English poet in the romantic era, who said, “Imagination is reason in its most exalted mood.” [...]
Probeyahn cited instances when imagination helps Jane explore deep moral questions and make hard decisions.
“Jane faces moral tests and temptations, but does what she feels is right and I think that the book wants you to know that it works out in the end,” Probeyahn said. (Elli Sanchez)
Telegraph India wonders about literary works inspired or derived from previous ones.
But in modern times — or should one say ‘postmodern’? — weaving patchwork out of existing texts as well as retelling known tales have become acceptable literary forms. Does the reader not find new stories in, say, Jean Rhys’s allusion to the mad woman in the attic from Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre or Howard Jacobson’s portrayal of Shakespeare’s Shylock? (Kamalika Basu)
One of The New York Times' new books of the week is
Heathcliff Redux: A Novella and Stories, by Lily Tuck. (Atlantic Monthly, $23.) In the novella that anchors this collection, Tuck uses the same flat, fragmentary style of her most recent novel, “Sisters,” to reimagine Emily Brontë’s 1847 novel “Wuthering Heights” as a tale of self-delusion and internal conflict in 1960s Virginia. The story is written in a series of short, clipped sections, sometimes a couple of paragraphs, others no more than a line or two per page. The “restrained but remarkably arresting” result, our reviewer Lucy Scholes writes, is “a master class in digression as a narrative device.” (John Williams)
New York Journal of Books posts about it too.

Star Tribune reviews the film Portrait de la jeune fille en feu.
The French romance begins in “Jane Eyre” mode: Marianne (Noémie Merlant), on a boat in rough waters, abruptly leaps into the sea with a mysterious package. She washes up on an island and we discover the package contains canvases. Soggy ones. She has arrived at an isolated manor to paint someone named Heloise. [...]
There’s a literary quality to “Portrait,” not just because of the Bronte-esque story but also because you’d be wise to pay close attention to the scene in which the women trade theories about why Orpheus turns to look back at Eurydice in the mythic tale, losing her forever. (Chris Hewitt)
A contributor to St Thomas Times-Journal wonders,
Did the Brontës have to do dishes on their vacation? (Eric Bunnell)
The sad thing here is not whether they did the dishes or not, it's whether the Brontës went much on vacation, which they mostly didn't.

The Oban Times features Canna House:
Ms Shaw, in her memoir From The Alleghenies To The Hebrides, recounted her impressions when she saw Canna House for the first time in the August of 1938: ‘It had a melancholy air, as though the home of sick Brontës.’
Brussels Brontë Blog tells about a recent talk on Anne Brontë's poetry by Emelie Sannen.


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