Dear Readers,

I now consider this blog to be my Juvenelia. Have fun perusing the archives, and find me at my new haunt, here.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Of Jane and Roe...

I'm intrigued by Alexandera Stanley's would-be-literary commentary on Saturday night's Jane Eyre. For one thing, she waxes on and on about how un-adaptable Jane Eyre is as a modern novel-- okay, it's never been "Clueless"ed, or "Bridget Jones"ed, 'tis true, but Rebecca is essentially a modern re-write, as is this year's best-seller The Thirteenth Tale. In fact, Stanley writes about Joan Fontaine as the original Jane without mentioning that she was also cast as "The Second Mrs. DeWinter" in Rebecca on purpose, by the studios, to emphasize the similarities. Stephen King references Eyre in the Shining and more. It's both the foremama of feminist lit and a certain genre of gothic lit (i.e. the Turn of the Screw, which also owes a direct debt to Jane that's unacknowledged by Stanley).

So yeah. Thats what I have to say about that. On another note entirely, the anniversary of Roe has gotten the internet poppin' with pro-choice vs. pro-life debaters. I find my blood boiling so wildly at the latter that I could almost turn into one of those ovresexed, baby-swallowing vampire-witches that the right wing already sees me as. I can't wait to "boo" my way through the State of the Union tonight.

Now, let's tie this all together by asking ourselves: would Charlotte and Emily Bronte have been pro-choice?
Hell to the yeah. Everything from Jane's inheritance to Rochester's blindness says yes, self-determination is high on their Yorkshire-bred agenda... and let's not forget that Bertha Mason is Jane's alter-ego, in the eyes of feminist critics (ditto with Heathcliff and Cathy, btw)--the outgrowth of the wild child trapped in the Red Room. In other words, every woman has an oversexed, baby-swallowing vampire-witch in her (or in Emily's world, a brooding Gypsy-man who represents the unchecked feminine) because the partriarchy makes it so when it violently leaves her in two by subjugating her to a life of parlor and child-bearing. So there.
If they just stopped oppressing us, we wouldn't have to burn castles, rip veils, dash our heads against a tree shouting "Cathy", or marry poor Isabella Linton. Or haunt our ancestral homes, for that matter. And wouldn't that be nice?

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm...another novel that owes quite a bit to J.E., which I didn't really think about until I was watching, is "The Secret Garden". Think about it...tortured brooding man who spends most of his time far from home, deep dark secret hidden in the house...ok, it's a much more innocent tale to be sure, but still...


    P.S. LOVED your liveblogs of both halves! :)