In the novel Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, we are introduced to Jane, the orphan protagonist of the story. When the novel first begins, she is an isolated, powerless ten- year old living with an aunt and her cousins whom do not like her.Jane feels alienated from the Reed family; therefore she spends much of her time alone. Jane is faced with two factors; one she is a girl, and two she is poor. These two factors contribute too much of Jane’s unhappiness, at least at this point in the book! Her class difference translates into physical difference, and Jane feels she is physically inferior to the Reed children.
Her cousin John is an over-indulged only son, whom uses his gluttony to bully Jane around; he describes Jane as being “thick”, and “unwholesome”. Jane tends to deal with her problems by secluding herself from her cousins. Books provide Jane with an escape from her unhappy domestic situation. I think Jane enjoys reading because books feed Jane’s imagination, offering a vast world beyond the claustrophobia of Gateshead.
The only problem with Jane reading is that John does not approve of Jane using heir items ” You have no business to take our books; you are a dependent, mamma says; you have no money; your father left you none; you aught to beg, and not to live here with gentleman’s children like us.” Which started a verbal fight, turned physical. John threw a book at Jane and she called him a “murderer” and a slave-driver.” Jane is then blamed for the quarrel. As a punishment she is banished to the red-room! I think the author sent Jane to this red-room, because at this time Jane once again questions her social status! At this point in the book there is a lot of gender roles, social castes, and symbolism. I think Jane needs to leave the Reed’s house, and go to Lowood where at least she can get an education. If she doesn’t fit into society now, at least with an education she can make a place in this world for herself!