Caleigh Findley

I would have to say that this section is probably one of the saddest, and most aggravating parts of the novel so far. Characterization played a huge role in developing the plot and building the tension in individual relationships. Honestly, I gained a whole new level of hatred for Heathcliff. When he was with Catherine, he showed a more sentimental and human side, but now that she is dead there is nothing left of him except a bitter, spiteful person whom holds hatred for practically everyone around him. His son, Linton, is a pathetic excuse for a human being. He is cowardly, clinging to young Catherine to protect him from Heathcliff, as if she could actually do anything to protect him. Even after Heathcliff beat Catherine, Linton still begged her to stay and protect him, not even caring for her well being. Catherine is truly a warm-hearted, but terribly naive child who has now been pulled into this old school forced marriage with Linton, of which she is determined to make the best of but in all reality is quite miserable. Nelly is equally as helpless, being a servant she has no power or control over anyone in the situation. Heathcliff wouldn’t even let her work as a servant in his house after Edgar died, which was rather cruel. I think he truly did that to rob Catherine of any lingering hope or comfort. He despises Catherine simply because she is Edgar’s daughter, and despises Nelly because she served Edgar and his interests, therefore he has to make both of them suffer. Hareton and Joseph are very much the same in that they are innocuous characters that choose to lash out every now and then. Nelly still holds a special place in her heart for Hareton, but I got the impression that her feelings towards him faded away after she escaped Wuthering Heights. Heathcliff ultimately controls every person in the novel, simply because they are afraid of him.

This old school arranged marriage between Catherine and Linton is eerie to say the least. Linton is completely under the control of Heathcliff, and because of that Linton now treats Catherine even worse than he used to. He expects her to accept the fact that everything that was once her’s now belongs to him, and she has to do everything he says and yet still be happy and care for him and not cry. If Catherine doesn’t lose her mind all over this kid and kill him, I’ll be shocked. She doesn’t have it in her now, but if this continues then she is gonna lose every last bit of innocence left in her, and it will all be replaced with resentment for Linton. Besides, this kid is pathetic. All he does is cry and beg Catherine to take care of him, he muddles in his sorrows like the child he is, and really has no grounds to boss Catherine around. If anything, she should be controlling him cause she is a lot stronger then he is. But Heathcliff has given Linton an inflated sense of power, which will hopefully come crashing down. Catherine is truly the victim in all of this; she just lost her father, she’s a prisoner at Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff beat her, she’s being forced to marry Linton, and her only friend Nelly has also now been taken from her. It doesn’t get much more unfair then that.

I think its interesting that all of this is being told from the perspective of Nelly, the servant. Why not Heathcliff? After all he is the main player in the novel. I think Bronte is trying to give a neutral perspective to the story, so that the reader can see the events from all angels. Sure, it would be very interesting to hear what Heathcliff was thinking, but at the same time his actions speak loud enough. Nelly plays a neutral like character in the novel, and by having her narrate it leaves the reader to develop their own opinions and ideas about the characters and the plot.

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Sara S.

This section was pretty surprising and sad. It starts off with Linton being sent to Wuthering Heights. He is very scared and nervous because he never has met his father, Heathcliff, before, and asks Mrs. Dean a lot of questions on the way to Wuthering Heights. Cathy does not know he is being sent away, which adds to the melancholy feeling, because she does not see him again for almost seven years, and this continues throughout the section with more death and violence. It’s also sad how Heathcliff treats Linton. Once Linton arrives, Heathcliff comes out to meet him and calls him his ‘property’ and ‘it’. He does not address him welcomingly, nor does he really want him there, the only reason why he does want him there is because Heathcliff does not want Linton with Edgar. Heathcliff treats Linton terribly, especially as the story continues, and Linton truly hates Wuthering Heights and his father.

In this section, we really got the feeling that Wuthering Heights symbolizes hell and Thrushcross Grange symbolizes heaven. There is a significant dark and light contrast between the two, Wuthering Heights being dark and a place of suffering, while Thrushcross Grange is light and a safe haven from evil.

I also thought it was sad that once Cathy met her cousin Linton again, she didn’t even know him. I also found it odd how Heathcliff is so persistent about Cathy and Linton getting married. While I do know there is money in it for him, I don’t know why he pushes it so much. I also figured out why Linton died: he was a very sick child. I didn’t figure out what his illness was, but I figured he was sick. I think though that he might have been able to get better if his father had given him the proper care. I don’t understand why Linton treated Cathy badly. She was the only one who actually cared about him and took care of him, yet he blew her off all the time. Why do you think that Linton did this?

The passing of Edgar was definitely a sad point in this section. I thought the death of Catherine was the worst yet, but Edgar tops it because his connection with his daughter was so strong that when he passes she is so depressed and down trodden.

I found it incredibly odd how Heathcliff forced Cathy to marry Linton. At this point in the book, Heathcliff is truly the devil because no one can refuse him and everyone obeys him due to his violent and forceful nature. Also, at this point, Wuthering Heights really is hell because Heathcliff will let no one leave and everyone stays to suffer. Also, tying into this, some major themes have arisen such as death, ghosts, and suffering. These all are gothic elements as well as key points throughout the novel. These elements are important because they symbolize the characters themselves and show their true personalities.

Lastly, when Mrs. Dean was telling this story to Lockwood, it sounded like he had a love interest in Cathy, so, I’m wondering if he’ll try to start a relationship with her. Did anyone else see this connection? I’m excited to see how this ends. 🙂

Sara S.

Caleigh,

I do agree that the theme of masculinity applies to Heathcliff, but I also think that Heathcliff has many layers to him. When he was younger, he was vulnerable as a boy against many who hated him. As he grew up, he turned this vulnerability into anger towards Catherine for abandoning him and leaving him alone with no one to love him. Now, he has to show and assert his manhood wherever he goes, may that be through violence or jealousy. While his manhood remains a continuity to his character, we also get an emotional side that we never see before with Heathcliff. When Catherine died, Heathcliff was truly crushed and, at one point, just cried, even a little, about her death. After this lapse of affection, he hid his emotions with anger towards Catherine and cursing her until he can be with her again.

I completely agree with you about each of the deaths in the households and you cleared up some shady parts for me. In my prior post I had wondered if there were any signs to Catherine’s sickness, and now thinking about what you stated about her death and thinking back now, she was simply ill because she was pregnant and did not take care of herself very well. To add onto your comment about Cathy and Linton’s friendship, I do believe that they will be fast friends and I do agree that Cathy will probably do something reckless to hurt herself. I wonder though, if Cathy will do something reckless with Linton and possibly get him killed in the process because Heathcliff stated at the beginning of the book that his son is deceased.

Now that you mention it, Heathcliff does somewhat symbolize the devil because lots of people, especially Isabella and Catherine are tempted by him and like to obey him at all costs. He makes them do things that go beyond what they know is right, yet they do it anyways. When Heathcliff is around, it seems like everyone loses their sense of mind and simply listens to whatever he says; whether this is out of fear or acceptance of love, I cannot state plainly, but in either instance Heathcliff is the man in control. Also, interesting point about the love triangle between Cathy, Linton, and Hareton. I did not even think about such a thing, but thinking about it now, I can definitely see that happening because they both show an interest in Cathy, as well as resembling their parents.

-Sara

Caleigh Findley

Wow, this last reading section was very interesting, it definitely caught my attention. I noticed a good amount of themes starting to emerge, some involving characterization and some just overarching themes. The first theme I noticed involved the characterization of Heathcliff, the theme of masculinity appears often in his actions and words. His outbursts really stem from jealousy over Catherine; he feels possessive over her and claims “that for every thought she spends on Linton, she spends a thousand on me” (141). Heathcliff’s pride is wounded by the fact that Catherine married Edgar, and so he feels the need to assert himself and prove that he is a man and that Catherine truly wants him and not Edgar.   He loves Catherine, the idea of her not loving him back would tear him to pieces, so thankfully she does love him back. But it isn’t enough for Heathcliff to know that Catherine loves him, he has to completely demolish Edgar and Catherine’s feelings towards Edgar; Heathcliff has to prove to himself that Edgar is not half the man that he is, and therefore was merely a temporary replacement in Catherine’s life. Also, this theme of masculinity comes up in Heathcliff’s physical actions towards others. He beats up Hindley and pushes Isabella around, showing no respect for the people around him. He feels the need to act aggressively towards people that do not automatically bend to his will, displaying physical control over the people around him just further proves his masculinity to himself.

Death plays a big part in this last reading section, with the deaths of Catherine, Isabella, and Hindley. Catherine’s death in childbirth shook the entire house, leaving Edgar to raise young Cathy on his own, and leaving Heathcliff in a state of mortal despair. Isabella can’t stand Heathcliff a minute longer, and leaves him; only to have a baby, named Linton, and die of disease. When Edgar brings Linton back to the house to stay with him, it becomes apparent that Linton and young Cathy will become fast friends. But the custody battle over Linton has just  begun, and foreshadows a war between Wuthering Heights and the Linton household. Hindley’s death is rather underplayed, he died in a drunken stupor which did not seem to surprise Mrs. Dean all that much. This constant motif of death gives the novel a somber, fragile feeling; it becomes clear that the situation at hand can change at any moment. There is no true stability to the lives of these characters, each person is all to aware of their own morality, except for young Cathy. She wants to venture out, and break free of the borders that Edgar has put up for her out of protection. This foreshadows that Cathy is going to do something reckless, because she has a naive and rebellious way about her, leaving her vulnerable to her circumstances.

Also, I’ve noticed that the characterization in Wuthering Heights is rather stereotypical. Heathcliff is the over aggressive man who falls in love with Catherine, the weak and naive women. He leaves her and she, being weak, falls in love with Edgar, who is a weak and defenseless man. Each fits into a stereotypical romantic novel character list. Bronte does not try and make any of the characters unique in any fashion, she sticks to the guidelines of a classic romantic novel which is an interesting stylistic choice.

Finally, I noticed some symbolism surrounding Heathcliff and Isabella. Heathcliff is always described in an evil manner, having “basilisk eyes” (169) and “cannibal teeth” (167). People see Heathcliff as the devil because of his outward manner and his actions. They think he is truly evil, and out to destroy everything around him. In contrast, Isabella is simply a victim of Heathcliff, and she symbolizes the naive young girl falling into the arms of temptation. She does eventually pull herself out of that situation, but nevertheless, her and Heathcliff were married and she can never run away from that period of time in her life. Catherine is also viewed as a victim of Heathcliff’s evil ways, he abandons her and then comes back only to tear apart her marriage and send her into spiraling depression. He cannot help but hurt those people around him, and if he is not hurting them then he is manipulating  them, much like he does to Mrs. Dean. He forces Mrs. Dean to assist him in seeing Catherine, and helping him sneak around behind Edgar’s back, which she could get fired for but does so anyways out of fear of Heathcliff. If she wasn’t afraid of him, then she would demand him to leave and would not assist him in continuing his romance with Catherine. Hareton takes after Heathcliff’s behaviors, which foreshadows him growing up to act exactly like Heathcliff does. If I had to guess, I’d say there’s gonna be a love triangle appearing between Hareton, Linton, and Cathy; simply because each of then takes after the older characters, and both the boys show an interest in Cathy.

Sara S.

First off, I absolutely loved chapter 10 because Heathcliff finally returns. It kind of reminded me of those movies where the male lead goes off to become a man and returns to be completely amazing and charming. That was my perception, but then the section went on and I sort of started to dislike Heathcliff in a way because of some of the mean and atrocious things he was doing to Cathy and Isabella.

Regarding Isabella, I really did not like her in the beginning because I wanted Heathcliff and Cathy to get together, but I also felt really bad for her. Cathy treated her terribly and embarrassed her in front of Heathcliff, but Heathcliff never really loved her and her brother, Edgar, does not really care about her. When she runs off with Heathcliff I think she was trying to get attention and just convince herself that she truly loved him. Once she was married to Heathcliff, I felt bad for her and started to like her because she would put him in his place and eventually found her own freedom, though she was burdened to carry his child, which turned out fine because Isabella truly loved her son.

Secondly, I felt like a lot happened in so little amount of chapters. Several key characters died, such as Cathy and Isabella, as well as Hindley. I expected death to be a major theme in the novel due to the Victorian era, but I wasn’t expecting so much death in a matter of 5 chapters. But, it explains why Cathy remains to haunt Heathcliff because he begged her to not leave him alone in this world until he passes over to be with her again. This was one of my favorite scenes in the book because we actually get to see an emotional, loving side of Heathcliff that no one really expected from him. Though he is revengeful and full of rage towards Cathy in her death, I could still feel that he truly missed her deeply.

Although Heathcliff’s sentiment for Cathy is pure, I have to say, I really hate her. She is too dramatic and whiny, as well as demanding and mean. She disregards and disrespects Isabella, which caused her to leave, and Cathy apparently gets “sick” over Edgar dismissing Heathcliff. I really think that this illness was all in her head and she simply died because she was not eating and taking care of herself. She also seemed like she was going mad anyways, which is another theme throughout the novel. Going off of this, I was really confused when Cathy randomly gives birth to a baby. I didn’t even realize she was pregnant and then she gives birth and dies. I really did not see any foreshadowing or hints leading up to this, so I found it really odd. Did you find any hints that she was going to have a baby?

In broader topics, I really like the narration of the novel because most of it is Mrs. Dean telling a story and Lockwood interjecting here and there. This kind of narration style reminded me of the movie The Princess Bride, where the grandpa is reading the story to the boy and the boy interjects every so often with his opinion. I think this style really helps readers understand the characters’ background in order for the author to lead into the events that occur more in the present.

Lastly, I like how we are now learning about Cathy’s daughter and how Edgar protects her so much. Cathy seems a lot like her mother and I think it’s cute how she is so interested in her cousin Linton. I feel bad for the boy though because he just lost his mother and has to move in with family he really does not know. I hope Heathcliff doesn’t take him away because the boy shouldn’t have a bad influence in his life. I wonder what happens with him though because in the beginning of the book, didn’t Heathcliff say his son was dead?

Sara S.

Caleigh,

I’m glad you were able to finally get into the blog (I know you were having problems with your computer) and glad that the Google Chrome thing worked.

Anyways, in response to your post, I agree with you dealing with the contrast between the humor and Gothic elements. I do believe that this contrast does leave the end of the book a mystery and adding onto this I like how the beginning started in present day and then Mrs. Dean went back and told the story. I believe this story telling is important because I think that maybe the rest of the book will be this continuous story, with ongoing interjections from Mr. Lockwood, but then I think it will come full circle and end where the book started off ( If that makes sense).

I also thought that Cathy’s change in character was quite odd, and at first I didn’t like it, but after, it seemed almost inevitable that this change wouldn’t happen. Either way, Cathy had to grow up sometime and I think whether she liked it or not, her father or maybe Mrs. Dean, would have had to step in and teach her how to become a proper lady in order to get married. I did find it odd though that Heathcliff held no resentment to her, like you said, but I guess this just hints at how he truly loves Cathy deep down.

Regarding the stylistic schemes, I agree with, also, with what you said about Joseph and Mr. Lockwood. It does show Lockwood’s prim and proper side and Joseph’s average demeanor. I also noticed how Lockwood is funnier than Joseph and how Lockwood can lighten up the mood, even though no other character is usually amused by what he says. By the way, did you think it was hard to understand what Joseph was saying? Due to his broken English I can barely figure out what he’s trying to say.

Lastly, there is tons of drama in this book, and though I do not like drama in real life, it’s quite fun to read about it in this book. I also think trying to figure out how all these relationships are going to end provide another form of entertainment in the story.

-Sara

Hey guys, sorry it took me so long to get on here! I found out that I had to get Google Chrome on my computer to get this website to work.

Anyways, I really like this book so far. The subtle humor mixed with the gothic-like imagery acts as an interesting contrast which I think gives the book a dynamic feeling, and also leaves it open-ended as to where the story will lead us. I also found the relationship between Catherine and Heathcliff  very odd, and I was surprised when they eventually got together. They got along when they were kids, which foreshadowed a relationship, but then the change in Catherine’s characterization when she comes back to the house lead me to believe that he would harbor too much resentment towards her to go back to loving her. She became a very stuck up person, not as sweet as she was as a child. But, nevertheless, I’m happy they finally got married. Additionally, Heathcliff’s characterization reminded me very much of the southern Gothic style, specifically referring to the theme of outcast. He was taken in by the Earnshaw family, and really the only friend he makes is Cathy, who then changes on him after staying with the Linton’s. He struggles to find his place, and harbors a significant amount of anger and agitation towards everyone. Also, he was bullied by his older sibling Hindley, which added onto the feeling of being outcasted by making Heathcliff an unwelcome guest in the house. This also sparked a need for vengeance in Heathcliff, which I think is a major reason why he acts in such an abrupt manner.
On a more stylistic note, I loved the contrast in the beginning between Joseph’s broken English and Lockwood’s proper English. The way Lockwood talks gives him the characterization of being rather stuck up and arrogant, whereas the broken English that Joseph speaks characterizes him as your average person, not much to say one way or the other. At the same time though, Lockwood has more of a sense of humor then Joseph does, and that sense of humor adds a breath of fresh air to his character, making him a little more reachable. Juxtaposing this though is Joseph’s rather aggressive demeanor towards Lockwood, he seemed almost threatned by Lockwood’s presence. This is later explained by Mrs. Dean that, “We don’t in general take to foreigners, here, Mr. Lockwood, unless they take to us first” (41). This mentality is hostile, and basically states that they don’t like anyone who is overly nice and welcoming to them first. They need the reassurance that your not a threat to them before they will ever treat you with any kind of respect and kindness. It is an untrustworthy state of mind that they hold, they only value their natives and reject any outsiders out of fear. Whether that fear is fear of judgement, violence, or deceit is unclear, but they are most definitely afraid of the unknown.
Along with this, the relationship between Mr. Earnshaw and Cathy is a very vindictive and spiteful one. They both love each other at time, because their father and daughter, but in reality they do not care for each other and lash out with anger towards one another. Mr. Earnshaw says, “Why canst thou not always be a good lass, Cathy?” and Cathy responds, “Why cannot you always be a good man, father?”(39). When I read that, my first thought was ouch, that stings. Mr. Earnshaw is simply stating that Cathy is misbehaved, and then Cathy takes it to a whole new level and says that her father is not a good man because he treats her horribly. Honestly, she has a right to feel this way. Her father has always been awful to her, so why would she feel that he is a good man if he has never shown her that he is a good man.
Taking all the relationships in the book into perspective, I think there is a lot of drama and dynamic going on between the characters. Each character has a problem with another character, and all of them hold grudges towards any person they have a problem with.