Thursday, March 25, 2021

Thursday, March 25, 2021 10:24 am by Cristina in , , , ,    No comments
The Telegraph and Argus recommends '6 books set in West Yorkshire that you need to read' and of course Wuthering Heights is there:
1. Wuthering Heights
Literary buff and locals will be all too familiar with Wuthering Heights and know all about its Yorkshire links.
Most of the action is centered around two neighbouring houses- Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange.
While the majority of the book is setin the Yorkshire Moors and, much of Emily Brontë’s novel was written and inspired by in the isolated West Yorkshire village of Haworth.
Plenty of locations across West Yorkshire are said to be the inspiration behind some of the key places in the book.
Top Withens is a ruined farmhouse near Haworth, said to be the inspiration for the Earnshaw house.
Ponden Hall in Keighley is also thought to be the inspiration for the Linton House, Thrushcross Grange.
Book synopsis: Heathcliff, an orphan, is raised by Mr Earnshaw as one of his own children. Hindley despises him but wild Cathy becomes his constant companion, and he falls deeply in love with her. But when she will not marry him, Heathcliff's terrible vengeance ruins them all. Yet still his and Cathy's love will not die. (Sarah McGee)
Far Out Magazine gives a 3.8 to the 1939 adaptation of the novel.
The production process wasn’t an easy one by any means. Wyler was known to be a difficult director to work with who valued perfection over anything else. One example of this was a scene with Olivier which was shot 72 times with the director not providing any constructive criticism. He just kept saying “again” repeatedly until Olivier could not take it anymore: “For God’s sake, I did it sitting down. I did it with a smile. I did it with a smirk. I did it scratching my ear. I did it with my back to the camera. How do you want me to do it?” The director calmly replied, “I want it better.”
Olivier and Oberon famously failed to get along as well and were constantly at loggerheads. Somehow, their dynamic ended up adding to the film’s rendition of the tragic romance between Catherine and Heathcliff. Although the film omits significant sections of the novel and the plot-lines about the second generation mentioned in Brontë’s work, Wyler gets the underlying sensibilities right at certain moments. Like many other adaptations, the 1939 version does get caught up in sweeping scenes of romance but there are flashes of hatred which formed the foundation of Brontë’s grim and unforgiving literary world.
Apart from the obvious changes, the film also shifts the time-period from the late 18th/early 19th century to mid-19th century. Scholars have theorised that the film’s producer Samuel Goldwyn preferred Civil War fashion but it was reported that he made that creative decision because he had to recycle Civil War costumes due to limited funds. Goldwyn made a lot of executive decisions about the project, most notably the infamous after-life scene where Heathcliff and Catherine are seen walking hand-in-hand as a testament of their undying love.
Anyone who is familiar with the novel will immediately understand that this was the exact opposite of what Brontë wanted to convey through the construction of Catherine’s ghost. The supernatural entity wasn’t a symbol of their affection but a vestigial remnant of their jealous hatred, doomed to haunt her “lover” for eternity. Given the details of the production, Goldwyn’s comments start making sense: “I made Wuthering Heights, Wyler only directed it.” It is clear that Goldwyn’s contribution ended up tarnishing Wyler’s vision and the spirit of Wuthering Heights but Goldwyn maintained that the film was his favourite project. (Swapnil Dhruv Bose)
Esquire has an article on film director Francis Lee.
Lee’s place is not on any maps so, as instructed, I followed the satnav to a pub outside the village of Haworth — famous as home to the Brontës (experts in pathetic fallacy) — and kept going until I saw an opening in the dry stone wall. Then through an open gate and down a plunging track to the hut. The front door opens straight onto Lee’s kitchen-cum-office, where he was making coffee. [...]
On another table, a bowl of lemons and a bowl filled with feathers. (As a boy, Lee showed Bantam hens in competition.) Stuck to the fridge, a postcard-sized photo of Wonder Woman and another of Kate Bush — a Brontë fan, as we know — plus a comic pencil sketch of a man in a potentially compromising position. In a spidery hand beneath him, the word “Francis”. (Alex Bilmes)
Harper's Bazaar (Spain) interviews writer Espido Freire, who has just published a book about Jane Austen.
¿Recuerdas el primer libro de Jane Austen que cayó en tus manos y cómo fue esa primera lectura?
La primera fue Orgullo y Prejuicio, tendría más o menos doce años. Y me gustó pero no me entusiasmó. En aquella época estaba mucho más interesada en literaturas de extremos, en las Brontë, Shakespeare e incluso Galdós. No leía mucha literatura infantil y juvenil, más bien Edgar Allan Poe, Prosper Mérimée, Bulwer-Lytton, eran lecturas decimonónicas con una carga de pasión enorme. Fue más adelante cuando empecé a valorar cuál era el mérito de la novela de Jane Austen. La primera vez fue una aproximación infantil. A los 19 años cobré un interés marcado por ella, es un modelo de autora en lo personal muy diferente a otras, no tiene nada que ver con una Mary Shelley apasionada que se escapa de casa, o con el halo trágico que tiene Emily Brontë, con la locura de Virgina Woolf o incluso con la independencia y el rompe y rasga de Emilia Pardo Bazán, es otra cosa. [...]
¿Jane te sigue fascinando para seguir investigando y que venga alguna obra más sobre ella? ¿Cómo está tu relación con Jane después de este libro?
Seguiré investigando, no sé si en cuanto a una obra ensayística más, porque hay más formatos como cursos y conferencias, en temas de empoderamiento de mujer… pero a estas alturas tiene mal remedio. Mis autores pueden crecer pero no desinteresarme. He quedado satisfecha de lo que he hecho, no me planteo ahora un nuevo ensayo, pero el de las Brontë sí que es posible. (Sandra Muñoz) (Translation)
Duna (Chile) has a reading in Spanish of a letter from Charlotte Brontë to M. Heger.


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