Catherine Earnshaw Character Analysis

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Wuthering Heights is a work marked by tumults in several aspects. Such tumults are particularly prominent in Bronte’s portrayal of Catherine Earnshaw as a victim and a victimizer. With such qualities, Catherine’s character was violently at odds with ideals of the Victorian womanhood. Namely, that a woman should be a passive angel in the house and a peace maker and that through her role, which was inseparable from their sex, women could achieve a transforming effect upon the world. Indeed, not major characteristics of Catherine Earnshaw. However, while being a victimizer, Catherine’s brutality could be justified in a way that would not affect one’s own sympathizes for her. Notably, Catherine’s first victim is herself. Her character was marked…show more content…
Catherine is most affected by this loss. According to Howard, Martin, Berlin and Gunn (2012), this absence could be seen as key to the instability of familial ties. Such instability is particularly obvious in the growing gap between Mr. Earnshaw and his children. In the beginning Mr. Earnshaw is introduced as a kind father, asking his children what to bring for them from Liverpool, however, after his wife’s death Mr. Earnshaw is unable to understand Jokes from his children and “Catherine, on her part, had no idea why her father should be crosser and less patient in his ailing condition” (Bronte, 2009[1847], p.36). While Nelly assert that Mr. Earnshaw was a kindhearted father though he was rather severe and strict sometimes, this does not eliminate the fact his relationship with his children, following his wife’s death, was characterized by negligence and lack of understanding. Along with these observations, Howard, Martin, Berlin and Gunn (2012) maintain that a child’s separation from his mother has been linked to behavior problems, particularly for girls. Consequently, apart from her attachment to the wild Heathcliff, the gulf between Catherine and her father and her mother’s death had negatively impacted her mental health and her character formation. Lastly Catherine is also a victim of
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