Skip to main content

The Bronte's should be 1,2 AND 3!

According to UKTV Drama, who carried out a survey of 2,000, Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights is the most loved love story. Austen's Pride & Prejudice and Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet came second and third. However, if the judgement had been mine alone, Jane Eyre would have been second and the much under-rated Anne Bronte's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall third; Austen could make do with fourth.

The Brontes were experts at conveying the passion that lies seething within a bleak backdrop, which is no surprise, considering where they grew up. I also have a theory: I think that the Brontes 'wild' nature (wild compared to their peers and the earlier Austen) was due in part to their Irish DNA – Marxist literary theorist Terry Eagleton referred to this in his paper, Heathcliff and the Great Hunger, meaning the Irish famine. Could Heathcliffe have been Irish, coming in as he did into Liverpool? The Brontes father was Irish, and wasn't Bronte, but Brunty. There have been stories about him burning their Wellingtons on the stove, something that could have come straight out of Wuthering Heights.

Another point to consider is the fact that most of the women who were this country's earliest recorded feminists or whose works had strong feminist elements, Mary Wollstonecraft, Caroline Norton, the Bronte sisters, Maria Edgworth, were all of Irish descent. Or is it just a coincidence?





The next generation of Hotmail is here - Windows Live Hotmail - update now for free.

Popular posts from this blog

Who was Mary Burns?

On 7th January 1863 Mary Burns was found dead from a suspected heart attack. She was 43 years old. Since her death Mary has received barely any attention despite the fact that she spent over twenty years as the common-law wife of Friedrich Engels, one of the world’s most influential thinkers and the co-founder of Marxism.

Born in 1822, Mary was the oldest surviving child of textile dyer and factory operative, Michael Burns, and Mary Conroy, Irish immigrants from Tipperary. Mary’s parents had married at St. Patrick’s in an area known casually as Irish Town, one of few Catholic churches in Manchester at that time. The year of Mary’s birth and her infancy were significant in that Manchester was still dealing with the aftermath of the event that became known as the 1819 Peterloo Massacre, a peaceful protest of the working-classes on the site of St. Peter’s Fields in which several people were killed and hundreds injured. The Massacre occurred when magistrates, alarmed at the size of t…

Booker Shortlist announced

It's been a while... I know. Dog walking on the Downs, a bit of theatre, a bit of baking, a bit of writing etcetera etcetera. I also managed to read two complete books in the past month, which I was so pleased about. I had not read a whole book for about a year. The first was A Lie About My Father by Scottish poet/writer, John Burnside; a very well written memoir about father and son, but like all memoirs, some unreliability I felt. Poignant and tragic in equal measure. Then my husband returned from Cyprus (too hot for me this time of year, I can barely cope with England!) with Sebastian Faulks's Birdsong. He loved it. And then I read it and also loved it. I had originally picked it up several years ago but didn't get beyond Amiens, where the first section is set, but was really glad I did this time around. Another incredibly well written book in the style of a good Victorian! I felt a bit unsure about bits of Elizabeth, in the later section, but I have never learnt so muc…

Good Canary

Forgot to mention that we went to see Good Canary at Kingston's Rose Theatre last week. Star role played by the brilliantly intense Freya Mavor, who plays a speed addict. It's directed by John Malkovich - his UK's theatre directorial debut. Will try and post more about it later.