Date of Award

5-1-2003

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

English

Abstract

Charlotte Bronte, through her novels The Professor (published posthumously in 1857), Jane Eyre (1847) and Villette (1853), attempted to resolve the issues she faced as a plain, unmarried, independent-thinking woman in the nineteenth century. As each story is told the author takes another step toward defining her ideal of love and coming to terms with what she was not given by her father Patrick, brother Branwell, and first love M. Heger. William Crimsworth, Edward Rochester and M. Paul Emmanuel have much in common with the men in Bronte's life, yet these similarities end when they overcome their selfishness, egotism, and weakness to win the women they love. The heroes transform for love and in the process grow to be better men that deserve the heroines' love and devotion as well as becoming the ideal man Bronte longed for.

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