Þe Olde Blogge Poste #4

Remembered to get it up this time. Huzzah!

So yeah, we won’t be doing any audio blogs, so don’t worry about it. It doesn’t seem to be necessary for this course. For now. Remember to keep up with the blogs and reading, though. I should be able to stay on top of them better now.

Later!

Andrew

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23 Comments

Filed under Novel: Wuthering Heights

23 responses to “Þe Olde Blogge Poste #4

  1. Jason

    The development of the children in the ‘second generation’ seemed to be leaning more towards the result of nature rather than nurture. Catherine’s death officially marked the two halves of the novel. The intensity surrounding Catherine’s death caused many readers to believe that it was the climax of the story, and that what follows were just mere anticlimax of the story.

    As one would read further, the main characters of the new generations seemed to be a hybrid of the characters that belongs to their parents. In such, they married attributed and qualities that had been opposed in the first half of the novel. Linton for example, had the arrogant, domineering and headstrong manner like Heathcliff, yet he also possessed the coy or shyness of his mother, Isabella. Conversely, young Catherine had the strong will and rashness of Catherine, yet she also had that gentle characteristics of Earnshaw. Lastly Hareton seemed to be a resemblance of Heathcliff. He seemed rough and had this finesse in him, in which he refused to be suppressed, despite Heathcliff’s attempts to stunt his development. All in all, one thing is clear, the children of the families brought with them identifiable characteristics that belongs to their parents. It seemed rather interesting for me, as it gives a sense that they had been ‘cursed’ by these characteristics and that these characteristics whether they like it or not will always be with them no matter what. Knowing that such distinct characteristics were carried by the new generation it begs the question whether it would be a continuous cycle within the family. However, this does not mean that they are devoid of their surroundings as the environment in which they are brought up also affected their development as a character.

    I believe that it seemed where they grew up – Thrushcross Grange or Wuthering Heights – it would have an effect on the children. Thrushcross Grange is characterised as something that represents aristocracy and social grace, something that represents the bourgeoisie class. And such mannerisms was displayed by the Lintons, this could potentially affect Young Catherine who grw up sheltered at Thrushcross Grange and had little to no idea about Heathcliff and Wuthering Heights. Conversely, Wuthering Heights seemed to underscore the idea of ungoverned passion and wildness, something that ultimately belongs to the ‘proletariat’ class. This is ultimately represented by the passionate and wild love possessed by Heathcliff and Catherine. One would be able to see that such wildness and strong will characterized to a place are passed on the new generations who lived there. Not only that, but the setting also held a Marxist view by contrasting the features in which the two setting represent. I would also like to note that the idea of contrast between the two settings seemed to relate to Catherine’s inability to decide between Edgar and Heathcliff; while she is lured by the social grace of Thrushcross Grange, her feelings had towards Heathcliff had a wild passion like Wuthering Heights.

    Indeed, the idea of nature before nurture seem evident within the book, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that nurture had nothing to do with their character development. I think that the setting in which they were brought up in as well as their parents’ influence on them would definitely contribute to their qualities as a character within the book.

    • The contrast between Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange is quite insightful. How does ‘ungoverned passion and wildness’ fit the proletarian class? I think I’d like to see a little more development there. What about Hindley and some of the other minor characters? Where do they fit?

      Good work, Jason! Thanks for your participation!

      • Jason

        1. “Ungoverned passion and wildness” relating to the proletariat class. I believed that at the time the proletariat class are stereotyped to be a group of people that are very uncivilised, uncultured, and even rowdy at times. I guess their constant want for their rights to improve led me to believe that they are these wild and untameable group of people, hence “wild and full of passion”.

        2. I think that Hindley would fit in with Wuthering Heights because when he inherit the estate, he began abuse the young Heathcliff, showing this sense of uncivilised human being. Additionally, his run to alcoholism after his wife died also gave me this sense of a person who does not know how to control himself, hence Wuthering Heights. If we take Lockwood into account here, I would say that he belong in Trushcross Grange (which he did, because he rented the place). I think that his mannerism, his will to be this ‘gentleman-like’ character would make him suitable to be living in Trushcross Grange.

  2. Karen

    One of the first things I thought after reading Wuthering Heights was, ‘How weird can these people get?’ What are the odds that so many unnatural people are all located in one tiny area? This reflects a little badly on Nelly, considering she’s the main narrator in Wuthering Heights. Of course, it’s only natural to take her words with a grain of salt. All humans have biases, Nelly included, and perhaps that is why the events occurring in Wuthering Heights– kidnapping, forced marriage, and class discrimination-are so extreme. Such acts could be a byproduct of a lonely, middle aged country woman who feels the need to embellish reality to impress Thrushcross Grange’s new tenant, Lockwood.
    The reason why I think this is because Nelly reminds me a lot about my maid. The comparison might be a little rough, considering Nelly is English, lived in the 1800’s, and my maid is Indonesian, and lives in the 2000’s. But the character similarities are striking. My maid has a tendency to exaggerate certain events, and much like Nelly, she can be extremely biased when it comes to people she doesn’t like. I don’t mean to say that all the events that transpired in Wuthering Heights did not actually happen. That would be taking too much credibility away from Nelly.
    But maybe Cathy was not actually kidnapped and held by Heathcliff – maybe she decided to visit and stay, but because Nelly disapproved of Heathcliff and did not want his association with Cathy to sully Cathy’s reputation, Nelly concocted a story where Cathy was held by Heathcliff against her will. And maybe Catherine wasn’t all that bad. Maybe Nelly made up the story of how Catherine pinched her in order to gain sympathy from a handsome Mr. Lockwood.
    Granted, the two examples above may be unlikely, considering this was not Catherine’s first outburst and Heathcliff wasn’t exactly a gentleman (and because Nelly really doesn’t seem bright enough to maintain consistency if she was lying about Catherine’s outburst or Heathcliff’s behavior), but it is possible.
    It’s definitely something I try to keep in mind when re-reading Wuthering Heights. I admit I may have been a little too harsh on Catherine in my last blog, and thinking about Nelly’s credibility and biases as a narrator have led me to revise my stance on many of the characters in Wuthering Heights – Catherine, Heathcliff, and Nelly included.

    • “Such acts could be a byproduct of a lonely, middle aged country woman who feels the need to embellish reality to impress Thrushcross Grange’s new tenant, Lockwood.”

      Yes it could; is there any textual evidence for this?

      “I admit I may have been a little too harsh on Catherine in my last blog, and thinking about Nelly’s credibility and biases as a narrator have led me to revise my stance on many of the characters in Wuthering Heights – Catherine, Heathcliff, and Nelly included.”

      Great! That’s what the class is all about. I’m interested to see where your reading leads you next.

  3. Daphne Tan

    I really like Cathy. She seemed to be a sweetheart from how Nelly described her. I think that it is good that Catherine died before she had a chance to take care of her daughter. I would hate to see Cathy to be a clone of her dysfunctional, selfish mother.

    One thing I really like about Cathy is how she is able to express her thoughts without being afraid of its consequences (even though she sometimes can be interpreted as offensive to the receiving end of the conversation). In her first meeting with Hareton her cousin, she was rude and proud because she thought he was a stable boy. But was honestly happy about meeting her uncle and cousins for the first time. Growing up in the Thrushcross Grange with her doting father must have caused her to become that way. But I personally think that it is better for her to be spoiled rather than be like her mother. Cathy’s innocence made her honest of her real feelings, unlike her mother who acted like a lady only when she feels like she needed to impress someone. I believe that Cathy will grow up to have Edgar’s personality, but with the will and spunk of her mother (which is the only thing good about Catherine). As someone in class have said, Cathy seemed to be a perfect combination of her mother and father, both in looks and personality. The “Edgar-blood” in her seemed to tone down the “Catherine-blood” in her.

    Linton in the other hand, is a very sad character. I can’t help but feel sorry for him. His mother ran away from home with him. And when she passed away, he was “thrown” from one household to the next. I can see that Heathcliff himself didn’t seem to like his own son. It’s no wonder that he gave off a vibe of death and depression if you knew his history.

    I also like the character of Hareton. He seemed to be this innocent boy who doesn’t know how to express himself even though he has a lot to express. Heathcliff himself said that he liked Hareton more than he liked his own son, and I can see why. Hareton, despite being uneducated and brash, is honest, similar to Cathy. I think that he is able to become even better than Linton, if given the chance. Heathcliff said that Hareton is gold treated as pavement cement, and that Linton is tin treated as fine china. He seemed to be very disappointed that his own son is inferior to Hindley’s.

    All in all, I like the characters of the second generation more than the first. Because of the Linton blood in them, they seemed to have grew apart from their Earshaw blood.

  4. Ainslie

    One of the things that we discussed in class this week was the character of Linton in Wuthering Heights. The son of Heathcliff and Isabella, he is a very frail and sickly young boy, but he also has a rather spoiled personality. Its kind of hard for me to imagine him as Heathcliff’s son, because they seem to be pretty different in physical appearance as well as personality. Linton definitely got more of his mother’s appearance, since he looks nothing like Heathcliff physically (different eye color, hair color, and skin color). One of the things that this reminded me of was when early on in this unit when Mr. Andrew mentioned various theories for who Heathcliff was. One of them was that he was like Mr. Earnshaw’s illegitimate son, which makes it more likely for Linton to be fair skinned I guess, since he would have some of Earnshaw’s ‘white’ recesssive genes or something in him. I don’t really know that much about the genetics of these physical appearances, so it’s possible that it that the theory doesn’t actually have anything to do with the genetics of Linton’s appearances and is completely unrelated, but that’s what came to my mind when we talked about how the two were so different. Anyways, back to Linton, we also discussed the reason for his attitude. Isabella only had her son to care for, since she realized that Heathcliff never loved her, and Edgar didn’t want anything to do with her because she married Heathcliff. Because of this she probably spoiled Linton very much and saw to it that he got whatever he wanted. Linton seems so pathetic physically, being sick and everything, that it doesn’t make that much sense to me for him to be so spoiled and demanding. Someone that weak should realize how dependent they are on other people, because I don’t think he could accomplish very much on his own. I don’t really get what Cathy could like about someone that whiny and weak, but I guess that’s her problem.

    • “I don’t really know that much about the genetics of these physical appearances, so it’s possible that it that the theory doesn’t actually have anything to do with the genetics of Linton’s appearances and is completely unrelated, but that’s what came to my mind when we talked about how the two were so different.”

      I don’t either. Someone really needs to consult his/her biology teacher to verify this. 🙂

      “Because of this she probably spoiled Linton very much and saw to it that he got whatever he wanted.”

      Insightful here.

      “I don’t really get what Cathy could like about someone that whiny and weak, but I guess that’s her problem.”

      Yeah, me neither; but two things to keep in mind: 1) Cathy had very little experience with men. Remember, she had lived a very sheltered life. 2) Linton, for all his disadvantages, was supposed to be a nice looking fellow, in a rather effeminate way. Some girls go for that kind of guy.

      Thanks for your participation, Ainslie!

  5. Sheri

    If there is one thing I despite about Wuthering Heights, it would be its characters.

    Yes, that may sound negative, but it is actually a very good thing. Far too often, I encounter fictional characters that are conspicuously without flaws and seem to personify society’s ideals. There are far too many of such characters in popular fiction, such as Bella Swan, the protagonist of Twilight (whose only flaw is that she is “clumsy,” and that is only to provide Edward Cullen with frequent opportunities to “rescue” her). As such, when I encounter well-developed, thoroughly unlikeable — perhaps even despicable — characters like the ones found in Wuthering Heights, I find myself enjoying the story much, much more. Most characters are meant to be relatable to us on a human level, and what is more human than a number of selfish, ignorant, and self-indulgent characters thrown together to interact (or conflict) with one another?

    In my opinion, one of the most “human” of Emily Bronte’s characters is Linton Heathcliff, the son of Heathcliff and Isabella. He is highly intolerable, just like many people I have encountered, and that makes him all the more interesting to me. And, much like the other characters in his universe, Linton is rich with flaws and errors. He is one of the most understated figures in the book and resides primarily in his father’s shadow. Yet, once we see through that and examine him as an individual, we begin to see that Linton Heathcliff is indeed a well-developed, provocative character.

    Linton is strange in that he is weak, yet enjoys exerting power over others. In the book, he allows himself to be bullied by his father, but at the same time he enjoys watching Cathy suffer when she is taken to live with them and later forced to marry him. Nevertheless, Linton’s defining characteristic is that he does not define himself but allows others to do so, particularly his father.

    Linton is a doormat, and a pawn. Others walk all over him and use him as a means to achieve their goals. Heathcliff, for instance, manipulates Linton for nearly his entire life in order to maneuver him into marrying Cathy. Linton is also forced to write his will to leave all of his possessions to his father. Marrying Cathy immediately gave Linton control of all her possessions, which then fell into Heathcliff’s hands upon Linton’s untimely death. Prior to this, even Cathy was stronger (both physically and in character) than Linton. One quote I found amusing: “Cathy, beside herself, gave the chair a violent push, and caused him to fall against one arm. He was immediately seized by a suffocating cough that soon ended his triumph.”

    Yes, Linton is weak, cowardly, spoiled, and overall an unpleasant character. But that also makes him rather endearing. I cannot yet decide whether I like him or not as a character, but what I know for sure is that he provides another interesting dimension to the story.

    • I like your thoughts here, Sheri. A major factor in any dislike for WH in our class appears to be the very thing you have mentioned here. Generally, the narratives that we grow up on detail the lives of noble and likable characters–characters with whom we want to identify. It can be somewhat jarring to find ourselves in a world consisting of individuals whose qualities remind us of the flaws of ourselves and humanity (perhaps even grotesquely exaggerated? that’s one for debate 🙂 ).

      “Linton is strange in that he is weak, yet enjoys exerting power over others. In the book, he allows himself to be bullied by his father, but at the same time he enjoys watching Cathy suffer when she is taken to live with them and later forced to marry him.”

      Good insight, but maybe not so strange as it may seem. I believe bullies are frequently themselves the victim of bullying, and often by an abusive father.

      Thanks for your participation!

  6. Hartini

    This week, our class spent some time discussing the comparisons that could be drawn between Cathy Linton, and her mother Catherine Earnshaw. The first paragraph of Chapter 18 gives us the first extended visual description of Cathy. She is described to be the “most winning thing that ever brought sunshine into a desolate house”, with the best features of both the Earnshaws and the Lintons. Even from the exterior, she seems to be more refined than Catherine, who was described to be pretty, with “the bonniest eye” and the “sweetest smile”. She also had long locks of “beautiful dark hair”, which is one of the most obvious physical contrasts against Cathy’s “yellow curling hair”.

    The next sentences go on to say: “Her spirit was high, though not rough, and qualified by a heart sensitive and lively to excess in its affections. That capacity for intense attachments reminded me of her mother: still she did not resemble her: for she could be soft and mild as a dove, and she had a gentle voice and pensive expression: her anger was never furious; her love never fierce: it was deep and tender”. Nelly’s description provides a clear contrast between Catherine and Cathy. While Catherine is fierce, passionate, wild, and fiery, Cathy is slightly tamer, tenderer, and more composed. Catherine’s actions lean to the extremes, while Cathy has a milder approach to things. However, both these characters have a degree of selfishness and haughtiness, due to their sense of class caused by their rather spoilt upbringings.

    Furthermore, it seems as though the men these women truly love bring out a different side of themselves- Hareton helps Cathy embrace the happier side of herself, while Heathcliff brings out Catherine’s more aggressive, impulsive side. That said, there is one key difference between the two that we are yet to touch on as a class- the fact that Cathy was ready to stoop to a lower level for someone she loved, while Catherine was not ready to degrade herself for Heathcliff. I can’t wait to see what the class will come up on this issue.

    Cathy is not the only character with contrasting attributes to Catherine. Isabella, for instance, is a wonderful foil to Catherine. This difference is evident on multiple occasions, namely in their love lives. While Catherine is usually in the higher position, where she is actually the one inflicting pain on her love interests. Isabella, on the other hand, is the used and manipulated victim. As a Linton, Isabella’s more refined behavior (both inside and out) is the opposite of Catherine’s “uncivilized” wildness.

    • “Hareton helps Cathy embrace the happier side of herself…”

      Getting ahead a bit, but would like to see this thought more developed. Is making her happy a meaningful “different side” in this sense?

      “That said, there is one key difference between the two that we are yet to touch on as a class- the fact that Cathy was ready to stoop to a lower level for someone she loved, while Catherine was not ready to degrade herself for Heathcliff. I can’t wait to see what the class will come up on this issue.”

      As will I. 🙂

      Thank you for your participation, Hartini!

  7. Caroline

    I’ve learnt some very interesting things in class about Wuthering Heights and the interpretation of literature in general. Despite the arguments against it, I still quite firmly believe that the author’s own interpretation of his or her work is the most reliable. I do however, also believe that an author may subconsciously insert a meaning, which can be extracted with a psychoanalytical dissection of the work. Cases where the author gives a different interpretation years after giving an initial one I believe, may be a result of the author rethinking his/her work or life (an author’s work after all, is always partly a reflection of his/her experiences and beliefs).

    A new idea I was introduced to was that the “true” interpretation of a work lies within the individual. This adheres to the philosophical belief system of relativism. In TOK class I have learnt the dangers of relativism and that humans tend to interpret things as they would like them to be. I personally am confused whether to believe that there is an absolute truth to everything or that many things do not have absolute truths. However, I do respect the belief that the individual interpretation of a work has value. Differences in opinion makes life more colorful and is it not what makes works of literature significant in the first place?

    On to Wuthering Heights…

    The Marxist interpretation of Wuthering Heights; in my opinion, is quite a valid interpretation as Heathcliff’s revenge is an important enough plot point and follows the early stages of the Marxist dialectic. Heathcliff, the oppressed exacts revenge on Hindley and Edgar by taking their power and possessions for himself, much like how the proletariat takes the reins of government and wealth from the bourgeoise. The second stage in the dialectic is dictatorship/capitalism — and Heathcliff indeed becomes one, forcing his will on what is left of the Earnshaws and Lintons; Young Cathy, Hareton, and Linton. The third and final stage is an egalitarian utopia where everything runs smoothly. We can see that with Heathcliff’s death, Young Cathy and Hareton are left to be happy together.

    The feminist interpretation is one I cannot completely agree with. Both Catherine and Isabella give their lives to Heathcliff and Edgar and suffer as a result. In other words, from a feminist point of view, the book is about the subjugation of women. A feminist interpretation I read construes Catherine’s “I am Heathcliff” as a surrender of her personal identity which I find incompatible with Catherine’s vivacious personality and general disregard for social norms. Catherine and Heathcliff’s wildness is what brings them together, because as kindred souls, they can feel comfortable and be themselves with each other. Therefore, “I am Heathcliff” is not the loss, but affirmation of Catherine’s personal identity.

    • “Despite the arguments against it, I still quite firmly believe that the author’s own interpretation of his or her work is the most reliable.”

      Generally I would agree with you. Keep in mind, however, that those asking the questions about where the locus of meaning actually lies would be approaching the whole question of meaning with a rather different understanding of what they are looking for than and a different sense of meaning than we might assume; that “meaning,” possibly even language, are not completely under the control of any individual, and so we can speak of meaning as being really “in” the text or “in” the reader.

      “This adheres to the philosophical belief system of relativism.”

      I would say it can _lead_ to relativism, but there are ways around it, perhaps.

      “I personally am confused whether to believe that there is an absolute truth to everything or that many things do not have absolute truths.”

      If we think of truth as a propositional “yes/no” statement about everything, this could indeed be confusing. The Biblical perspective, I believe, is a bit more nuanced: namely that absolute truth does exist but it is a person (Jesus Christ), not a set of propositions.

      “However, I do respect the belief that the individual interpretation of a work has value. Differences in opinion makes life more colorful and is it not what makes works of literature significant in the first place?”

      Good point. Hopefully no one from any perspective would say that individual interpretations don’t matter at all.

      “We can see that with Heathcliff’s death, Young Cathy and Hareton are left to be happy together.”

      Why did Heathcliff have to die? Why couldn’t the proletariat revolution move directly to egalitarian utopia?

      I could respond to more here, but I think I’ve said too much already. 🙂 Good work, Caroline! Great TOK links. Real learning is mostly just making connections.

      Thanks for your participation.

  8. Mikey

    The theory of Marxism is an interesting perspective to see the novel Wuthering Heights in. Even though the theory of Marxism was still a relatively new idea that was finding its beginning around the years Wuthering Heights was written, Marxist theories, such as the struggle between different classes, can be seen within the context of the novel. Wuthering Heights is about a story of two families of noble standing, who end up bickering amongst each other in grim fashion, much like the bourgeoisie class Marx was use to seeing. The theme of Class struggle, the eternal battle between the lower class, the have not’s, against the upper class, the have’s are ever present in the novel.

    One instance is where Catherine Junior, the girl belonging to the prestigious Linton family, first meets Hareton, the crude ruffian farm hand. When she first meets him, she treats him kindly, by inquiring about general question about the property and such. However, after she learns that Hareton was actually not the owner’s child, she immediately treats him as a servant, and wishes him to immediately serve her. Her new found knowledge changed her perspective of Hareton in the blink of an eye, seeing him first as a respectable fellow, to immediately a dehumanized servant.

    However this instance is not left as it is. Later on, Catherine learns about her family heritage to Hareton, causing her to instantly cry, in a sort of shamed and pitied way. She cannot bear to think about herself being related to the uneducated and barbaric Hareton. The bourgouise cannot see themselves associated with any familial ties to the lower class, and in this instance, complete irony is interjected into Catherine’s situation.

    • “Her new found knowledge changed her perspective of Hareton in the blink of an eye, seeing him first as a respectable fellow, to immediately a dehumanized servant.”

      Why “dehumanized”? I would like to see more development here.

      “The bourgouise cannot see themselves associated with any familial ties to the lower class, and in this instance, complete irony is interjected into Catherine’s situation.”

      Again, why not? A good angle, but might need some more support.

      Thanks for your participation, Mikey!

  9. Jesslyn

    So far this week into Wuthering Heights, I have yet had enough to say that it’s becoming better and better every time I read it. As we move on into the later chapters, the presence of young Linton emerges and the readers are enlightened with his weak yet demanding demeanor. Heathcliff’s claim over his long (lost?) child is seen in these chapters, as he promises to take care of him as well as Edgar would even though it was made clear from Heathcliff’s reluctance to get to know the child over the years that he really was not as delighted as he made himself out to be. Heathcliff, although welcomed young Linton into his house along with Nelly, Hareton, and Joseph, had earlier said in his speech that he would wait for the day that young Linton would die, indicating his dislike of the chlid.
    Isabella’s death was a tragedy, and her absence had left a scar on to her son, poor young Linton. The sudden death of his beloved mother and the absence of a father since he was a child had caused Linton to become unusually dependent on others and weak, factoring in the fact that he has only lived with a dominant female figure all his life. Young Linton’s character remained stagnant throughout the story, for his position even at Heathcliff’s house remained to be the weak and child that was overlooked. As young Linton continued to grow up, he was eventually faced with the inevitable fate that Heathcliff had planned out already for him; to marry young Cathy. This particular scene indicates Heathcliff’s natural tendencies in being a dictator-like character and trying to control everything around him, especially because of the fact he had been in omission throughout his life.
    I honestly think that although there had been many scenes weaved into the book to say that Heathcliff has now changed into a bad man, only wanting to take care of young Linton because of the advantages that he comes with, yet I still believe that the hopeless romantic that Heathcliff once was is still in there; hopeful yet still hopelessly in love with Catherine until the end his time.

    • “I honestly think that although there had been many scenes weaved into the book to say that Heathcliff has now changed into a bad man, only wanting to take care of young Linton because of the advantages that he comes with, yet I still believe that the hopeless romantic that Heathcliff once was is still in there; hopeful yet still hopelessly in love with Catherine until the end his time.”

      What do you think is driving Heathcliff to behave in this way, Jesslyn? And would you consider him good before his return to WH?

      Thank you for your participation!

  10. Stacy :)

    This week we focused more on the character development of Linton and his contribution to the story of Wuthering Heights. Through chapters 19-20, we are able to see that Heathcliff is clearly not fond of Linton. Ever since Linton’s arrival in Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff refers to him as his property. He also indicates that he invited Linton over not because of love or genuine care, but that he wants to use him in order to gain property rights to the Thrushcross Grange. Heathcliff also constantly refers to Linton as ‘it’, as if he was an object. He also calls Isabella a ‘wicked slut’, constantly insulting Linton’s origins and causing fear in Linton. It is fair to say the Heathcliff abhors Linton. This caused anger within me because of Heathcliff’s sheer determination to make Linton’s life a living hell even if he has never done Heathcliff wrong. Heathcliff is supposed to be an admirable father figure to Linton. He should at least sympathize with Linton’s loss of Isabella, the one person that Linton was able to seek consolation in. Instead, Heathcliff takes his anger and hatred that has accumulated due to his rough past on an innocent Linton. This book is somewhat unappealing to me because it seems like characters never learn from their own lives. Heathcliff experienced discrimination as he was growing up, being treated unjustly, thus causing bitterness to perpetuate in his life. If he knows what it is like to be in pain, what it is like to be demeaned, why would do the same to his own son? It seems like a majority of the characters in this book never grow up and do not have the ability to simply let go of the past to create a better future for future generations. How selfish!
    On the other hand, Nelly is somewhat more compassionate towards Linton. She is almost a better motherly figure than Isabella has ever been, and in chapter 20 it is evident that she even knows Linton’s preference of food. There is a trust that has grown between Linton and Nelly, for when Nelly is about to leave the Heights, Linton screams, “Don’t leave me! I’ll not stay here!” Linton clearly sees Nelly as a figure to take refuge in. Also, Nelly is genuinely caring towards the welfare of Linton. We can see this by the honesty she speaks when describing Heathcliff’s ignominious attitude and treatment towards his own son. In chapter 19, Nelly also calls Linton a ‘good child’ and comforts him when he fears the ecstatic nature of Cathy. I personally enjoy Nelly’s narration of the story. Although some perceive her as the antagonist of Wuthering Heights, I think she is an admirable character who can tame and balance the wildness of characters like Catherine and Heathcliff.

    • andrewlitclass

      “This book is somewhat unappealing to me because it seems like characters never learn from their own lives. Heathcliff experienced discrimination as he was growing up, being treated unjustly, thus causing bitterness to perpetuate in his life.”

      How does this trait affect the characters’ believability for you, Stacy?

      “Although some perceive her as the antagonist of Wuthering Heights, I think she is an admirable character who can tame and balance the wildness of characters like Catherine and Heathcliff.”

      A valid reading. The different readings and ways we may examine the novel are one of the things that makes it interesting, I think.

      Thank you for your participation, Stacy!

  11. Patricia

    Just a few hours ago, I was at the times bookstore and came across something pretty interesting – a row of magnets with names and its meanings. Among a row of name magnets, a name stood out to me – Cathy. On that magnet, it was mentioned that the name Cathy was an ‘english’ name that means spotless and has a cute, fun, friendly, and outgoing characteristic. A total contrast to the Catherines in the book. Looking at the contrast, it is amazing how Emily Bronte was able to incorporate so much simialirity and contrast in the same story. In my previous blog, I wrote how there was so much similarity between the names and characters. I then realized that, there are also huge differences between them. This is seen especially in the Catherines. Catherine Earnshaw tends to be more extreme and violent and mean, while her daughter young Cathy is more gentle and naive, and less extreme. Their childhoods are also different, Catherine had a wild and free childhood where she was allowed to explore till her heart’s content, while Cathy was pretty much stuck in her own home. Heathcliff and Hareton seems to have some differences too. Heathcliff is more violent and ‘uncivilized’ while Hareton seems to be nicer and less violent. I think Emily Bronte is a genious to be able to write something so similar and diffferent at the same time.

  12. long into the night i have pondered the question… why is Heathcliff such and massive… jerk. Well i have decided, that both nature and nurture played rolls in the evolution of the tyrannical enigma that is Heathcliff.

    At the beginning of the book Heathcliff comes into the picture as a Gypsy boy that nobody in the house likes, however even from the time he came he was quiet and sullen. the understanding of a boy with an already scarred childhood made me wonder whether heathcliff’s morality was savable at all.. Then he went on to be hated his whole, life and have the one woman who he cared for and who cared fro him say it would be a step down to marry him and that, she was going to marry another man, just added onto it. One thought i had was that Hareton is a slight resemblance of heathclif had he not been hated by everyone during his life… quite, and quick to temper, but still a nice enough guy inside. It is interesting to see that switch.

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