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The Assassin

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Introduction

Discuss the nature of Charlotte Bronte's views on education in 'Jane Eyre' Charlotte Bronte tells the story of the life of Jane Eyre. Jane Eyre is an orphan living with her cruel, wealthy Aunt Reed (by marriage) and her 3 cousins, John, Eliza and Georgiana, who do not treat Jane fairly and constantly remind her she is dependant on them. Eventually, Jane is sent away to a boarding/ charity school for orphans and poor people called 'Lowood Institution', where not much money is spent on the pupils. They have awful accommodation and clothing, and not enough food. The school is extremely strict and devoted to religion. Jane spends ten years at Lowood, eight years as a student and two years as a teacher. 'Jane Eyre' was written in 1847, which were Victorian times. At that time, in Britain, women did not have many options where occupations were concerned. Jane was from the lower middle class, therefore her main options were to become a teacher or a governess; she also had the option of getting married and be dependant on a husband. Jane did not like the idea of being dependant, as she had been dependant on Mrs Reed, her benefactress, and was seen as unworthy; even the servants believed Jane was lower than them as she did not pay her own way. As Jane was an orphan, she had even worse chances and choices in life. Charlotte Bronte's mother died when she was young and her father was a clergyman. ...read more.

Middle

The girls then have thirty minutes of recreation, and then they study. After that, they are given a glass of water and a piece of oatcake. The girls say their prayers and go to bed at about nine o clock. The previous paragraph suggests that the girls have a very structured day at Lowood and do the same thing each day. It is obvious that religion is a big part of their day, as they pray many times a day and sped a lot of there time reading the bible etc. Plus, the amount of, mainly plain and disgusting, food the girls are given is not enough and this is one of the main reasons typhus came to the school and infected so many girls. It is also a cause of the bad accommodations and situation of the school. It is all to do with the way Mr Brocklehurst runs the school, for example, the amount of money going to the school and making even the sick girls go outside in the cold. Charlotte used her own school experiences in 'Jane Eyre', as she creates a positive image of Miss Temple, the teacher who is fairer and more sympathetic towards the girls, as someone who is clever and carries her self well. 'In broad day light, she looked tall, fair and shapely; brown eyes with a benignant light in their irids, and a fine pencilling of long lashes round, relieved the whiteness of her large front; on each of her temples her hair, of very dark brown, was clustered in round curls, according to the fashion at the time.' ...read more.

Conclusion

Miss Temple is concerned about the girls' health and wishes to help nurse them back to health, especially when typhus invades the school, even though she is at risk of catching the illness. Eventually, it is found out that Mr Brocklehurst's negligent treatment of the girls is found to be the cause of typhus coming to the school, so a new group of overseers is brought to run the school and control the money going to the school. Mr Brocklehurst is still technically involved, yet he is massively discredited. The conditions of the school and the treatment of the girls are dramatically improved. Jane's further six years as a student at Lowood is generally enjoyable and she excels in all her subjects. I think Charlotte Bronte thought schools were too harsh on the students, especially in the charity/ lower class schools. Charlotte probably remembered her own experiences at school and used her memories to describe Jane's experiences at Lowood Institution. It also comes across that richer people can do what they want and take education for granted, in the case of John Reed, who abused his master and did what he wanted at school, yet he still wanted to leave school and stay at home. I think Bronte thought children could benefit from having different kinds of teachers, as it is mentioned that the girls generally behaved and were sincerely pleasant and polite to Miss Temple, as she was kind to them and respected them, however, they behaved extremely well for Miss Scatcherd and never put a foot out of line out of fear, therefore they behaved, but felt that they could not talk to her. Carrie Friedle Jane Eyre essay completed: 17/04/05 Page 1 of 7 ...read more.

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