Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.”
– Charlotte Brontë
After a few failed attempts, I finally managed to finish Jane Eyre. It was definitely an uphill battle at times, but overall I am really glad to have read it (although I am also really glad to be finished with it).
I was surprised by the strong feminist undertones of Brontë’s work. Jane consistently places her own self-worth and independence over the wills of others, even when it means sacrificing what is dear to her. The fact that Jane can only consent to marry Rochester when she has achieved her own mental and financial independence highlights the recurring theme of love versus autonomy. Jane’s steadfast conviction in her own self-worth — despite living around people who find her mostly worthless and ugly — is what sets the novel apart from other English classics I have read.