In future, when the Editrix expresses a negative opinion on the Rev. Mr. Edmund Bertram, she would be pleased if her Gentle Readers would reply simply, “St. John Rivers,” as it will serve as a useful reminder. We thank you, as always, for your support.
7 thoughts on “A Very Short Editorial Comment on Perspective”
Oh Lordy, don’t go all soft on EB now. St. John Rivers’ sins are his own. Edmund Bertram is still a wanker.
Not going soft on EB–just realizing there’s worse out there!
It might amuse you to know, Mags, that in the BBC”s recent programmes to clebrate National Book Week it emerged that the author Jeanette Winterson’s adoptive mother (a lady of very strong, not to say strange, fundamentalist religious views) would only have one secular book in the house, which book was Jane Eyre. However, she would only read it to the young Jeanette rather than let her read it herself. This turned out to be because she did not approve of Charlotte Bronte’s ending and so substituted her own in which Jane married St John Rivers and went off to be a missionary.
I have to say I like Jane Eyre (the character) a lot better because she not only turned down St. John, she got all sassy-mouthed with him.
I get what he’s saying that if they were in the missionary field and not married, it wouldn’t look right and could cause problems, but to keep on at her with all his “I’m special and I know things because God told me them and you must listen to me” was just way too creepy-stalker-cult-leaderish for me. And Bronte’s imagery of Jane feeling fetters tightening, a steel trap closing around her, etc. was just horrifying.
I don’t know why I never noticed this before. I’ve read the book many times. The first time I was quite young (I read the Brontes way before Austen) and I’m sure it would have all gone over my head anyway. But I have also read it as an adult and I never really liked St. John but never noticed his creepiness, either. Maybe I skimmed over all his yada yada yada (geez, the men in this book talk a LOT) to get to the good part where she would obviously get back together with Rochester. 😉 I find when I read ebooks, that I read them more closely! Probably because it’s more trouble to flip back if I miss something.
Also, all that male-beauty-face-like-marble-cold-kisses stuff? Remind you of anybody? If Stephenie Meyer didn’t actually crib from Bronte, she certainly created Edward Cullen as St. John’s doppelganger, at least in looks.
Sinjun *is* creepy. Jane is quite right when she says that, basically, no one would know that they *weren’t* brother and sister…..but not only is he all “he for God alone, she for God in him” but he really wants some s*x and this is the only way to get it.
Bronte is rather Pagan when she has Jane choose a living lover with all his many flaws over a loveless but God-approved marriage.
Seeing the movie in about 4 hours–I hope it’s good!
Ugh, I can’t stand St. John. He’s waaaaaaaaay worse than Edmund!
Yes, he is indeed creepy – and the empty-headed rich girl Rosamund Oliver was very lucky that he did not decide her infatuation for him was God’s way of getting him extra money for his missionary work.
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