Bronteana: Bronte Studies Blog Archives

July 11, 2005

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Filed under: Anecdotes,Uncategorized — by bronteana @ 10:09 pm

I've been so busy lately- all in a good cause I assure you. Blogger is doing strange things this evening and will not allow me paragraphs or umlauts. I am most seriously displeased (well, I have learned something from Miss Austen 😉 So- What have I been up to? I've been reading a lot of essays on the Brontes, including the selections I have of 'Myths of Power' by Terry Eagleton. He makes some valid points, but the absurd things he says distract me, and in no small measure annoy me… especially how he hates Charlotte Bronte. Now, it's fine to say that in some particular way she doesn't live up to your standards. And it's okay to say that her sisters were better writers… if you must (but really, what is the purpose of ranking them in that way?). But, please, when you are supposed to be talking about Anne, or Emily, don't suddenly break in with the Charlotte bashing. I'm pretty sure that my indignation is not only the result of the fact that I ADORE Charlotte's work. I am not unreasonable, but it is simply bad critical practice. That is my major objection to this piece. The second is that his arguments about Charlotte are so unsubstantiated as well. He completely fails to prove to me that Anne's religious characters are humble while Charlotte's are self-agrandising. I see no such indications of self-agrandisement in the text. If he reads the text and envisions Jane, truly, gloating in her mind about the misfortunes of the Reeds he is free to do so, but if he expects me to accept it as part of his argument he had better prove it to me. I have so much more to say, but the lack of proper paragraphs is driving me crazy! I meant this to be far more coherent. I blame the heat.

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2 Comments »

  1. Nothing like a good rant. 😉 Eagleton had his chance, and you have yours.

    And now I’ll have mine- Eagleton you are wrong. And I’ll take a page from your book and not back up my comment. So there.

    Comment by ThisbeCiel — July 12, 2005 @ 3:54 am |Reply

  2. to thisbeciel:

    I have read a lot of Eagleton’s work, and I get the same reaction each time.

    There will probably be more rants here as time goes on. I tend to need to blow off a little steam when I read literary criticism!

    At least he doesn’t try the “…of course…” or “clearly…” trick. …*twitch* But just interrupting an interesting discussion of Emily’s work with, oh, and by the way Charlotte can’t write as well! :P, is almost as annoying. Almost. …It’s very close.

    Comment by Brontëana — July 20, 2005 @ 1:40 pm |Reply


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