Treatment of Social Issues in Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre
Charlotte Bronte's 'Jane Eyre' (published 1847) mocks at the social issues in the Victorian times; the
novel has been taken up for research as the issues presented in the novel are still prevalent today.
There are many social issues which are dealt with in the novel, the major one being the treatment
of women. Victorian times, no doubt, were the best period in the history of Britain, but every era
has its own negativities. J. S. Mill, in his book 'On Liberty' states that women in Victorian times
were directed "not to self-willed and governed by self control, but submission and yielding to the
control of others... to live for others; to make complete abnegation, and to have no life, but in their
affections". (Mill, 11) The case is different in the novels of Charlotte Bronte; her female characters
are empowered. The women characters in Jane Eyre break all the stereotypes, but still upheld
them in many ways. Other major issue is public health, food and disease in the novel. The poor are
constantly subjugated to suffering and deprivation in the name of religion. There is discussion on
matters relating to race, gender and social class also. This paper also deals with issues such as
education system, lack of employment and wide disparities between the rich and the poor
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