Writing a Jane Eyre Essay

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Short Synopsis of Jane Eyre

Author Charlotte Bronte wrote this fictional piece in the mid-19th century Victorian Age in England. Jayne enjoyed a nice life until her parents died and she had to go live with her nasty aunt who hated her. Once Jayne spoke out, she was sent to a horrible boarding school, where she was again mistreated.

At age 18, Jayne became a governess and landed at Thornfield Manor, owned by wealthy Edward Rochester. Rochester proposed marriage, but Jane discovered that he kept his insane wife in the attic and promptly left. She then went to live with the Rivers family and took a job running a school nearby. St. John Rivers also proposed marriage and a move to India for missionary work, but Jane, beginning to come into her own, abruptly declined.

She then returned to Thornfield Manor, but it was in ruins. Rochester was now living at another manor, having lost an arm and gone blind. It was here that Jane finally found love and marriage on equal footing.

Sample Jane Eyre Essay

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Jane Eyre Themes

There are several themes in this novel:

  1. Societal Class Structures: Jayne was accepted as a servant at Thornberry and was expected to act as a member of that class. Over time, however, she came to see her own value and worth and ultimately came to enjoy equal footing.
  2. Control: Throughout her life, Jayne was under the control of others, and she was submissive for the most part. In time, however, she realized that she had the right to control her own life and, by asserting that self-control, found happiness
  3. Morality and Ethics: Jayne experienced a lack of morality and ethics when she lived with her aunt and at the boarding school. She also experienced a type of morality and ethics in the character of St. John. Her own sense of ethics caused her to refuse marriage to Rochester (the first time around) and to St. John, whom she knew she could never really love. 
  4. Feminism: Jayne was a bit ahead of her times, growing from a submissive Victorian young lady to an assertive adult female who knew what she wanted and got it.
  5. Minor themes include the concept of marriage, spiritualism, and the need for some people to maintain appearances.

Jane Eyre Essay Topics

You may be given some Jayne Eyre essay questions from which to choose or perhaps some Jayne Eyre essay prompts from your instructor. They will probably cover most of the topics listed below. However, if you have your own choice for your book review/essay topic, then here are some great options:

Best Jayne Eyre Essay Topics

  1. Compare and contrast the characters/personalities of St. John and Edward Rochester
  2. Analyze Jayne in terms of modern-day feminism
  3. How is this novel considered “gothic?”
  4. Compare any other two female characters in the novel
  5. Analyze Jayne’s moral and psychological development during the novel.
  6. How is Jayne Eyre autobiographical?
  7. How do experience and failure impact Jayne’s growth?
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Writing a Jane Eyre Essay

Even though you are writing a type of book review, your piece is still an essay. It must have an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion

The other obvious component of your essay is a thesis statement. If you select one of the topics above, then turn the topic into a question (if it is already not in the form of a question). Your answer to that question can form your thesis statement.

Once you have your thesis statement, it will have to be supported by at least three (if not more) points, each taking up a paragraph. And the supporting details must come directly from the novel and other research you may have done. 

You will want to develop a rough outline of your points so that you stay on topic. And if you have done some research, do not forget to cite those sources.

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