Location

Old Dominion University, Learning Commons at Perry Library, Room 1306

Start Date

8-4-2017 1:30 PM

End Date

8-4-2017 1:50 PM

Description

In order to become a truly aware, authentic self, individuals must process their suppressed experiences and desires. This act is most effectively done when the individual is able to accept their experiences through seeing their suppressed self reflected in or approved by another individual. In Charlotte Brontë’s novels Jane Eyre and Villette, Brontë describes the journey to an authentic self through the female protagonist’s relationship with her male counterparts. Within both novels, the protagonist has a choice between two men: an ideal, marriage-plot husband and an unlikely brute. The men that are ultimately chosen allow a pathway for the protagonist to process their suppressed desires because the man understands the woman as a being-in-creation, rather than a finished product. By entering into these relationships that encourage self-growth, the women are engaging in relationships that rely on a substance deeper than what is found in traditional marriage-plot novels.

Comments

Research Advisor: Dr. Katherine Osborne

Keywords: Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre, Villette, relationships, suppression, Victorian literature, intersubjectivity

Presentation Type

Presentation

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Apr 8th, 1:30 PM Apr 8th, 1:50 PM

Processing the Suppressed: A Look into Productive Relationships in Jane Eyre and Villette

Old Dominion University, Learning Commons at Perry Library, Room 1306

In order to become a truly aware, authentic self, individuals must process their suppressed experiences and desires. This act is most effectively done when the individual is able to accept their experiences through seeing their suppressed self reflected in or approved by another individual. In Charlotte Brontë’s novels Jane Eyre and Villette, Brontë describes the journey to an authentic self through the female protagonist’s relationship with her male counterparts. Within both novels, the protagonist has a choice between two men: an ideal, marriage-plot husband and an unlikely brute. The men that are ultimately chosen allow a pathway for the protagonist to process their suppressed desires because the man understands the woman as a being-in-creation, rather than a finished product. By entering into these relationships that encourage self-growth, the women are engaging in relationships that rely on a substance deeper than what is found in traditional marriage-plot novels.