Essay #2 Prompt
The protagonists in Jane Eyre are products of a class-conscious, race-conscious society in which financial security shapes personal freedom. Many critics feel that the novel argues for the irrelevance of riches, yet Jane and Mr. Rochester are both constrained by their social position, while Bertha Mason is constrained by her ethnic/racial heritage.
In an essay of at least 750 words, chose two of the characters (Jane, Rochester, Bertha) and explain how these two characters are constrained by their respective social class, or gender, or race, and argue whether or not the fact that Jane ends up with the wealthy, landed Rochester, not to mention an inheritance of her own while Bertha dies in the fire, undermines the novel’s argument for the irrelevance of riches.
Your thesis statement will assert how and why the two characters you’ve selected are constrained by their respective social class, or gender, or race, and argue whether or not the fact that Jane ends up with the wealthy, landed Rochester, not to mention an inheritance of her own while Bertha dies in the fire, undermines the novel’s argument for the irrelevance of riches, and assert whether or not the resolution of the novel (Jane and Rochester end up together) undermine the novel’s message that wealth is irrelevant.
Supporting evidence in body paragraphs must come from the primary text (Jane Eyre) and from a secondary critical source or sources (Susan Fraiman’s essay “Jane Eyre’s Fall From Grace,” Sandra Gilbert’s critical essay “Plain Jane’s Progress”, “Reading Jane Eyre While Black,” by Tyrese L. Coleman, and/or “Bertha Mason is Sacred….” by Vanessa Zoltan to support your points.
You will need to use the novel and one or more of the assigned critical articles (Gilbert, Fraimain, Coleman, Zoltan, Atherton, and/or Ara) to support and develop your thesis statement.
Directions for Writing:
Please organize your essay into three distinct sections:
An introduction that captures your readers’ attention, establishes a context for the discussion, and includes a thesis statement. The thesis statement should specifically assert an opinion about how/why the two characters you’ve selected are constrained by their respective social class, or gender, or race, and argue whether or not the fact that Jane ends up with the wealthy, landed Rochester, not to mention an inheritance of her own while Bertha dies in the fire, undermines the novel’s argument for the irrelevance of riches, that can be supported by textual evidence from the novel, and from one or more of the assigned critical articles.
A multiple paragraph body which provides evidence in support of the thesis. Each paragraph should begin with a topic sentence that establishes a relevant connection to the thesis. Each topic sentence will be supported and developed by providing concrete, specific evidence from the novel and from one or both of the assigned critical articles in the form of summaries, paraphrases, and brief quotes documented according to MLA format. Source material will be analyzed and evaluated to show how and why it supports a topic sentence, and by extension, the thesis.
A conclusion, which begins with a restatement of the thesis, and continues to bring the essay to a graceful close.
All borrowed material must be correctly documented according to MLA format. Give your essay a title. Double space throughout. Refer to your English 100 handbook for examples of integrating and documenting quotes, summaries, and paraphrases. All borrowed information (summaries, paraphrases, quotes) must be introduced by a signal phrase and followed by a parenthetical citation. Your essay must include a list of works cited. Be sure to carefully proofread and edit your final draft. You may not use first person pronouns (I, me, my, mine, myself), or second person pronouns (you, your, yourself, yourselves) unless part of a direct quotation.
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