anactualmess
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What is the impact and purpose of some of the key moments of deception such as Rochester's disguise as a gypsy, his claims of intent of marrying Ingram and, of course, his hiding of Bertha?

Also does Jane ever deceive herself?
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Parker Tracy
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Ok, well you need to consider 2 things - the impact on the reader, and the impact on Jane Eyre, who, as the narrator, is the person who presents the text to us.

So, let's take these in turn: look at the scene where Rochester disguises himself as the gypsy - who is fooled by this? What does he say to these people in terms of "reading their fortune"? Can he say things in disguise that he cannot say in person? Jane, notably sees through him. Is this an indication that she is someone who sees him for who he is - she is not fooled by pretence? i.e. they are a good match?

Why does he let Jane believe he is marrying blanche? Is it to illicit a response from Jane? To what extent is the 'marriage' a deception on Rochester's part and an ill-founded assumption on Jane's part?

Bertha - this is more complex...the deception evolves, so look at what Jane assumes, and then how the truth is revealed. The moment when the truth comes to light, and Jane has to flee, because she cannot accept Rochester's version of events. Rochester tries to conveniently 'manage' the truth, so he can be with Jane. But Jane cannot accept this. It is worthwhile to consider a feminist reading here - is Mr Rochester a victim - as he would have us believe - or is he a bad guy who locks up his wife and thinks he can discard her, and take up with another woman?

If you are wanting to look at the character of Jane, there is a great essay that David Lodge wrote, called "fire and Eyre" - which considers the evolution of the character of Jane Eyre, and the different aspects of her personality (her name "air", the "fires" - literal as well as her explosive nature - St John RIVERS - the water aspect). There is a lot here to think about in terms of how the character develops and whether she knowingly deceives herself or not...

A close reading of the text and some time in the library will set you on course. Good luck - one of the best texts to study, for my money!
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anactualmess
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(Original post by LiyoS)
Ok, well you need to consider 2 things - the impact on the reader, and the impact on Jane Eyre, who, as the narrator, is the person who presents the text to us.

So, let's take these in turn: look at the scene where Rochester disguises himself as the gypsy - who is fooled by this? What does he say to these people in terms of "reading their fortune"? Can he say things in disguise that he cannot say in person? Jane, notably sees through him. Is this an indication that she is someone who sees him for who he is - she is not fooled by pretence? i.e. they are a good match?

Why does he let Jane believe he is marrying blanche? Is it to illicit a response from Jane? To what extent is the 'marriage' a deception on Rochester's part and an ill-founded assumption on Jane's part?

Bertha - this is more complex...the deception evolves, so look at what Jane assumes, and then how the truth is revealed. The moment when the truth comes to light, and Jane has to flee, because she cannot accept Rochester's version of events. Rochester tries to conveniently 'manage' the truth, so he can be with Jane. But Jane cannot accept this. It is worthwhile to consider a feminist reading here - is Mr Rochester a victim - as he would have us believe - or is he a bad guy who locks up his wife and thinks he can discard her, and take up with another woman?

If you are wanting to look at the character of Jane, there is a great essay that David Lodge wrote, called "fire and Eyre" - which considers the evolution of the character of Jane Eyre, and the different aspects of her personality (her name "air", the "fires" - literal as well as her explosive nature - St John RIVERS - the water aspect). There is a lot here to think about in terms of how the character develops and whether she knowingly deceives herself or not...

A close reading of the text and some time in the library will set you on course. Good luck - one of the best texts to study, for my money!
Thank you so much that was really useful and I will check out that essay now
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peachesforplums
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LiyoS has it summed up really well to be honest. The only other thing I could think it link it to is how Rochester's deception always links to women in some way. So first he dresses as a female gypsy to try and find out Jane's secrets, possibly because as a woman in Victorian society Jane has a greater trust for other women (though this is contrasted by Jane's distrust of Blanche, so possibly it is about social class brining a sense of comfort?). Next he allows Jane to believe he is marrying Blanche, who Jane (rather openly) dislikes; it could be argued that he does this in order to, once again, force Jane to reveal her feelings for him because of her jealously (which we see when she draws herself and Blanche) so that he can propose. Or maybe, as anactualmess said, it is not Rochester but Jane's assumptions.
Then we have the final and rather important deception. This time, instead of implying he is marrying another woman, Rochester fails to mention that he is married. We need to look at the intention of this first: why would Rochester so willingly lie to the woman he "loves"? Firstly, it is important to mention there is some debate about the depth of Rochester's love for Jane, but that's another discussion. There's the more simple interpretation that it's due to Rochester's love and his want to be with Jane that clouds his judgment. Also it could be said that it is merely a construct Brontë uses to either further the story or, possibly, critique the lack of morals of the upper class in Victorian society. Possibly race is a factor to consider, is Rochester embarrassed about marrying a "crazy Creole"? Or maybe it is that he seems women as objects and play things, so maybe we should consider gender? This then leads onto a discussion of Bertha's role in the novel and the importance of her race and mental stability. Why did Brontë choose to make Bertha not white, during a time when casual diversity wasn't something authors ever thought about (is it even a thing now?), so clearly it was a purposeful choice?

I'd also second what LiyoS said, read essays. Read a lot of essays, they're really useful and the more you read the more you can develop your interpretation which will make your essay more original and therefore it will stand out to the examiners.

Good luck in your exam!
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anactualmess
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(Original post by peachesforplums)
LiyoS has it summed up really well to be honest. The only other thing I could think it link it to is how Rochester's deception always links to women in some way. So first he dresses as a female gypsy to try and find out Jane's secrets, possibly because as a woman in Victorian society Jane has a greater trust for other women (though this is contrasted by Jane's distrust of Blanche, so possibly it is about social class brining a sense of comfort?). Next he allows Jane to believe he is marrying Blanche, who Jane (rather openly) dislikes; it could be argued that he does this in order to, once again, force Jane to reveal her feelings for him because of her jealously (which we see when she draws herself and Blanche) so that he can propose. Or maybe, as anactualmess said, it is not Rochester but Jane's assumptions.
Then we have the final and rather important deception. This time, instead of implying he is marrying another woman, Rochester fails to mention that he is married. We need to look at the intention of this first: why would Rochester so willingly lie to the woman he "loves"? Firstly, it is important to mention there is some debate about the depth of Rochester's love for Jane, but that's another discussion. There's the more simple interpretation that it's due to Rochester's love and his want to be with Jane that clouds his judgment. Also it could be said that it is merely a construct Brontë uses to either further the story or, possibly, critique the lack of morals of the upper class in Victorian society. Possibly race is a factor to consider, is Rochester embarrassed about marrying a "crazy Creole"? Or maybe it is that he seems women as objects and play things, so maybe we should consider gender? This then leads onto a discussion of Bertha's role in the novel and the importance of her race and mental stability. Why did Brontë choose to make Bertha not white, during a time when casual diversity wasn't something authors ever thought about (is it even a thing now?), so clearly it was a purposeful choice?

I'd also second what LiyoS said, read essays. Read a lot of essays, they're really useful and the more you read the more you can develop your interpretation which will make your essay more original and therefore it will stand out to the examiners.

Good luck in your exam!
Thank you so much!!
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