While mankind has made substantial progress in ridding the world of diseases, mental illnesses are still prominent, and often overlooked. In the novel Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë highlights illnesses caused by tensions in order to construct a world where mental health problems and internal struggles take on a life of their own. In the case of Catherine Earnshaw Linton and Heathcliff Earnshaw, the body follows the mind 's descent into distress, with mental illness inflating strenuous circumstances. On the surface, the fevers and hallucinations are nothing more than a plot point orchestrated to spawn grief. However, upon further analysis, it is apparent that the illness represents far more than physical afflictions. In Thomas Foster 's How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Foster acknowledges that the purpose of including such illnesses is for the reader 's benefit, allowing the character 's condition to reveal deeper insights "about the story at large" and how the body 's deterioration is dependent on circumstance as well as the character 's mental well-being (Foster 112). Heathcliff and Catherine arguably suffer the most-both physically and mentally-as they go through their respective cycles of misery. While Catherine 's fever is more concrete than Heathcliff 's act of starvation, both of their afflictions result in them withering away. Misery is just one of the many consequences of the unacknowledged tension between them. Nonetheless, their physical conditions
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In the book The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, we see that the parents are ‘book smart’ and that they are surprisingly knowledgeable about certain complex subjects, for example, the father taught Jeannette binary code, a complex computer coding language. Despite their book smarts, I also stated they might have a mental illness which would explain the crazy acts. What I am wondering is if they have such good book smarts, why don’t they have steady jobs with good pay? I believe because of their different views on life and their possible mental illness that this could cause a lack of judgment and understanding of a situation. An example of this would be the father’s habit of packing up the family in the middle of the night and pulling the old
Visualize a society full of unconscious inhabitants who view technology as their source of life and opinion. Without questioning anything, people are content, lounging around all day with their eyes glued to massive TVs which feed them more false information than real news. This society exists as a parallel to our world today. The widespread use of technology is concerning because of its negative effect on the population. In Ray Bradbury’s novel, Fahrenheit 451, along with modern-day sources, it is demonstrated that technology and social media are detrimental because they cause mental illnesses, a disconnection from reality, and cause people to stop thinking for themselves.
My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath " (91, Brontë). The thematic insight presented by the ecocritic lens is a metaphorical emphasis on how nature, atmospheric changes exhibited by the weather, animal reactions, and the environment itself contribute to the development of Wuthering
Thomas C. Foster uses the twenty-fourth chapter of How to Read Literature Like a Professor as a place to investigate how authors employ illnesses to give meaning to their stories. But not all illnesses are physical, and Courtney Cole’s novel, Nocte, displays how the human body reacts to extreme trauma in ways of self-preservation. After surviving a car crash in which her mother and brother died in, Calla Price’s body shut itself down into a coma and rejected all notions that pointed to reality. Instead, her brain blocked out anything that could make reality seem real, and she woke up from her coma believing that her brother and mother were still alive. Her illness may not have been as literal as heart disease or cancer but her inability to
There are many stigmas and opinions surrounding mental illness and its effect on the mentally ill and how they function in society. However mental illness cannot be used as a scapegoat for all of one’s problems, as some issues are due simply to the actions and beliefs of a person. Holden is an example of such a case, where his issues are attributable to his thoughts and actions despite his mental condition. Holden is responsible for his own alienation from society through his categorization of the people around him and his arrested development due to trauma. Holden throughout the entire book calls others phony, and even his own family stupid, therefore alienating himself from others.
By reading “How to Read Literature like a Professor” and “The Kite Runner”, the reader is aided in his or her ability to understand the true meanings behind the text. One is able to decipher how the act of coming together to eat can mean anything from a simple meal with family, to an uncomfortable situation that leads to anger or stress in an individual character. The reader is able to understand the use of rain or other weather in a novel to transform the mood and tone of scene, or understand the cleansing or destructive qualities that weather may have on the overall plot of the story. The use of illness can be transformed, as it can lead to the reader discovering veiled means behind tuberculosis, cholera, a simple cold, or even cancers such
Foster develops the concept that an illness is never just an illness in How to Read Literature Like a Professor. This is evident in Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God through the symbolism of the illnesses that impact Janie’s life. Foster explains that a prime literary disease “should have strong symbolic or metaphorical possibilities” (Foster 224). Hurston utilizes this concept in her novel, the characters developing illnesses that represent Janie’s freedom and independence.
Edgar Allan Poe, a man who has changed literature through his numerous pieces of writing, such as The Cask of Amontillado, The Tell-Tale Heart, and The Fall of the House of Usher. In Edgar Allan Poe’s famous work, The Raven, the main character is confronted with a raven. The character speaks to the raven, thinking it couldn’t respond, but the raven did respond, but only speaking one word, “Nevermore” (Poe 331). In some cases of mental illnesses, one can experience hallucinations, hearing voices, paranoia, and even persecutory delusion. Is it possible that the Raven could have symbolized something other than a bird.
Heathcliff, one of English literature’s best known villains, is discovered “starving,…houseless, and good as dumb…in the streets of Liverpool” by his soon-to-be but not long lasting foster father, Mr. Earnshaw, within the first few chapters of Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (Brontë 37). Because “[n]ot a soul knew to whom [the boy] belonged” (Brontë 37) and Mr. Earnshaw, by his evidently kind nature, “would not leave [the child] as he found it,” (Brontë 37) took him home and ordered his family to treat the child as one of their own, even going so far as to “[christen] him ‘Heathcliff’…after the name of a son who died in childbirth” (Brontë 38). Soon, “[Heathcliff’s foster sister] Cathy and [himself grew]…very thick” and he became Mr. Earnshaw’s
Chapters five to eight of Lord of the Flies carries the main focus of character development. The beastie becomes more apparent throughout this section. Simon attempts to describe the beastie as “mankind’s essential illness” (Golding 96). However, he is unable to portray his thoughts effectively due to his introverted tendencies limiting his ability to speak to a crowd and the low maturity level of his audience. I found this connects to the growing recognition of mental illness of the time this novel was written.
Ken Kesey uses his novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, to describe the lives of patients in a mental institution, and their struggle to overcome the oppressive authority under which they are living. Told from the point of view of a supposedly mute schizophrenic, the novel also shines a light on the many disorders present in the patients, as well as how their illnesses affect their lives during a time when little known about these disorders, and when patients living with these illnesses were seen as an extreme threat. Chief Bromden, the narrator of the novel, has many mental illnesses, but he learns to accept himself and embrace his differences. Through the heroism introduced through Randle McMurphy, Chief becomes confident in himself, and is ultimately able to escape from the toxic environment Nurse Ratched has created on the ward. Chief has many disorders including schizophrenia, paranoia, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, and, in addition to these illnesses, he pretends to be deaf and dumb.
Firstly the obsessive love between Catherine and Heathcliff. Catherine claims that her love for Heathcliff “resembles the eternal rocks beneath –a source of little visible delight, but necessary” (73). She tells her housekeeper “Nelly, I am Heathcliff –he’s always, always in my
The reader 's response to the novel and how readers in some way work or collude with the author in the act of reading to construct meanings or satisfy unconscious wishes by their response to characters and events. This is a theoretical way of stating that readers usually have empathy or sympathy with one or more of the novel 's characters and may, therefore, identify psychologically with the fortunes of that character. In the case of Jane Eyre, a good deal of the reader 's understanding of the novel depends on the degree of his or her sympathy or hostility towards Jane. Readers will also bring to their reading their own expectations, often derived from their previous
Emily Brontë approaches the idea of sickness and death of the characters in her novel Wuthering Heights in a peculiar way. The characters that are ill are usually mentally ill, and their deaths often result from physical ailments derived from mental illness. The drive for revenge and desire for love that reigns among the characters often lands them in stressful situations that cause them to spiral downward into these mental illnesses. Emily Brontë’s emphasis on the motif of sickness and death in Wuthering Height deepens the drama of the plot and constructs more complicated relationships between the characters.