Sunday, June 07, 2020

The Telegraph mentions the petition to make the English GCSE syllabus more diverse:
Over 250,000 people signed a petition this week urging exam boards to overhaul the choice set texts, which currently include works by Shakespeare as well as 19th century writers such as Charles Dickens, George Elliot and Charlotte Brontë. (Camilla Turner and Ewan Somerville)
The Conversation uses data analysis to study Charles Dickens's novels, finding curious similarities like the use of the 'his hands in his pockets' phrase:
Importantly, it is not only Dickens who depicts such everyday behaviour. We find examples in other 19th-century fiction, too:
Mr. Earnshaw vouchsafed no answer. He walked up and down, with his hands in his pockets, apparently quite forgetting my presence; and his abstraction was evidently so deep, and his whole aspect so misanthropical. Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights. (Michaela Mahlberg and Viola Wiegand)
The Los Angeles Review of Books's Avidly channel posts an approach to Wuthering Heights as a cabin fever novel:
I can’t recall when I last read it, but it was a long time ago. I remember thinking of Emily Brontë’s novel as a tale of love—love lost and love lingering, strange love (necrophiliac, incestual), but love nonetheless. But reading this book today, I don’t see love. I see the effects of sheltering-in-place.
Wuthering Heights documents the detrimental effects of staying too long in constrained spaces and remaining too long with the same house-mates. Nearly every character in this novel is trapped: due to weather, illness, class and gender positions, fear of the world beyond, and more. This is a novel about loneliness and anger, narcissism and madness, the surge of imagination and dreams of revenge, desires for human connection and the pull of the natural world. This is a novel about cabin fever. And in May 2020, we know something about that. These days, Emily Brontë’s haunted and haunting tale from 1847 rings eerily familiar. (Jessica Pressman)
Birmingham Live recalls the Brontë chicken incident on Coronation Street:
Viewers will be reminded how Geoff forced Yasmeen to eat her pet chicken Charlotte Brontë,  who she lovingly looked after in the garden. (Sanjeeta Bains)
The nine circles of Zoom hell in Varsity:
As you’re joining the call, you face the good old mind-gymnastics of thinking about where on earth you’re meant to look. Your mind wanders as you ponder this conundrum: will you look at the host? The other members of the call? You ask yourself if looking out the window will be too Jane Eyre-wannabe? God forbid you attempt the ‘looking-at-no-one-in-particular’ approach, your eyes glazing over. 5 minutes later you wrench them back into focus, only to find that you’re looking directly at yourself. I’ve looked like that ... the whole time? Do you think people can tell I just looked at myself? (Georgina Buckle & Maria Pointer)
The Trinidad and Tobago Sunday Express recalls a recent act of cultural barbarism:
Many Caribbean book lovers were saddened by the demolition in early May of the historic Jean Rhys house in Roseau, Dominica. The childhood home of the author of Wide Sargasso Sea and other classic novels, which was estimated to be 150 years old, was bulldozed to build an office block.
Fala! Universidades (Brazil) vindicates Anne Brontë's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall:
A Inquilina de Wildfell Hall é um romance epistolar, no qual possui uma narrativa dentro de outra narrativa. Além disso, o texto mistura dois tempos: presente e passado. A história começa com a produção de uma carta por um jovem fazendeiro, chamado Gilbert Markham. Nela, ele conta a seu amigo sobre o rebuliço da chegada de uma misteriosa dama com seu filho no vilarejo, a Sra. Graham. Além de narrar como ele foi se apaixonando por ela. (Jennifer de Carvalho Soares) (Translation)
De Groene Amsterdammer (in Dutch) interviews the writer Anne van Veen
Mariska van Schijndel: Jane Austen of Charlotte Brontë?   Charlotte Brontë. (Translation)
Página 12 (Argentina) has an article about Anne Carson:
Pero más acá de la historia están los poemas y más acá de los poemas están los versos, y más acá de los versos está la conjunción de, por ejemplo, sustantivo y adjetivo, la forma tan propia y enrarecida que tiene Anne Carson de construir sus frases. Las asociaciones bellas y voladas, con algo de John Ashbery, algo de Wallace Stenvens, pero a la vez tan dramáticas y pregnantes que nos hacen pensar en Emily Dickinson y las hermanas Brontë. (Mercedes Halfon) (Translation)
La Capital (Argentina) interviews the writer and journalist, Florencia Abbate:
Sebastián Riestra: A pesar de que sobre el final te referís a la literatura y nombrás a Virginia Woolf, me quedé con ganas de más. ¿A qué otras escritoras considerás trascendentes para el feminismo? 
En el siglo XIX, las hermanas Brontë también inventaron personajes femeninos que no encajan con las convenciones de género de la época. (Translation)
Knack (Belgium) lists books, docs and podcasts about racism:
Wide Sargasso Sea - Jean Rhys
Met Wide Sargasso Sea schrijft Jean Rhys een proloog aan Jane Eyre. De Caribische auteur raakte gefascineerd door de 'gekke vrouw op zolder' uit de beroemde roman van Charlotte Brontë, een personage dat amper een stem maar wel een afkomst kreeg. Die 'gekke vrouw op zolder' is - naast een seksistisch trope uit de Victoriaanse literatuur - de eerste vrouw van Rochester, de man met wie het hoofdpersonage van Brontë uiteindelijk zou trouwen. Rhys vertelt haar verhaal. Hoe ze opgroeide in een weerspannig Jamaica net na de afschaffing van de slavernij. En hoe ze met Rochester trouwde en verhuisde naar het ongastvrije Engeland, waar ze uit vervreemding en isolatie het verstand verloor. (M.M.) (Translation)
La Libre (Belgium) interviews the writer Guillaume Musso:
Et puis, je mène la vie dont je rêvais à 11 ans avec le choc des Hauts de Hurlevent et à 20 ans, quand je lisais Barjavel et Stephen King. (Guy Duplat) (Translation)
A list of good night quotes includes one by Anne Brontë on Legit. 746 Books finds the six degrees of separation between Normal People and Wuthering Heights.

Calmgrove posts an interesting review about one of Charlotte Brontë's unfinished novels: The Story of Willie Ellin. The Brontë Babe Blog also shares a thought-provoking discussion on The Professor: late juvenilia or a mature work?


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