Helen Burns Essay

Jane Eyre: Helen Burns Character Analysis

In Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, Jane encounters several characters during the stages of her life. Some of the characters appear in more than one stage of her life such as Mrs Reed, Bessie, and Rochester. There are other characters who are only there for her for a short period of time such as St John, Miss Temple, and Helen Burns. Although these characters are only in Jane’s life for a short time, they each have a great impact on Jane, especially Jane’s encounter with Helen at the Lowood Institution. Helen Burns makes a grave impact on Jane’s life, at Lowood and continuing on for the rest of her life.
Helen strives to live a Christian lifestyle despite the difficulties in her life. She is continually punished by her teacher, Miss Scatcherd. Helen is publicly insulted by her “Burns, you poke your chin most unpleasantly; draw it in” (Brontë 64) she continues to critique everything Helen does, from the way she stands to how she holds her head. Helen is physically punished for not washing properly when the water was frozen that morning. Helen continues to exemplify a Christian moral by taking the punishment without oppose or question, she has a “respectful courtesy” (Brontë 65) throughout her torture. “The teacher instantly and sharply inflicted on her neck a dozen strokes with the bunch of twigs” (Brontë 65). Helen stays strong and did not shed a tear. When Jane questions Helen on her dislike for Miss Scatcherd she replies with a humble remark “It is far better to endure patiently a smart which nobody feels but yourself, than to commit a hasty action whose evil consequences will extend to all connected with you; and, besides the Bible bids us return good for evil” (Brontë 66). Helen even goes to the extent to blame herself for the punishments she receives from Miss Scatcherd, “I am, as Miss Scatcherd said, slatternly; I seldom put, and never keep, things in order; I am careless; I forget rules; I read when I should learn my lessons” (Brontë 67). The meekness and humility Helen displays are some of her several Christian attributes. Helen teaches...

Loading: Checking Spelling


Read more

Physical & Emotional Abuse in Jane Eyre: How This Affected Jane’s Evolution Into a Dynamic Character

1608 words - 6 pages Jane Eyre has been acclaimed as one of the best gothic novels in the Victorian Era. With Bronte’s ability to make the pages come alive with mystery, tension, excitement, and a variety of other emotions. Readers are left with rich insight into the life of a strong female lead, Jane, who is obedient, impatient, and passionate as a child, but because of the emotional and physical abuse she endures, becomes brave, patient, and forgiving as an adult....

This essay is on Jane Eyre. The question was: How does Jane's character change through the course of the novel?

865 words - 3 pages From her troubles with the abusive Reed family, her friendships at Lowood, her love of Mr Rochester and her time with the Rivers family, Jane's character remains strong and vigilant despite the hardships she endures. Through the course of the novel, Jane's character changes slightly but moreover reinforces itself as Jane uses people,...

Analysis of Bertha Mason´s Character in Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

847 words - 3 pages Bertha Rochester’s introduction into Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte had an immense impact on her present life and aligned with the disappointments in her past. Bertha Rochester is the madwoman who lives in Mr. Rochester’s attic. She lives there because she is Mr. Rochester’s wife who was kept a secret from Jane. Mr. Rochester married her, not knowing what he was getting himself into it. Bertha Rochester is also the sister to Mr. Mason who was...

How successful is Bronte in engaging the reader's interest in her character and establishing the concerns of the novel "Jane Eyre" in chapter one?

1042 words - 4 pages 'Jane Eyre' is a semi-autobiographical novel first published in October 1847 by Charlotte Bronte under the pseudonym of

An Analysis of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre

1428 words - 6 pages An Analysis of Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre is presented in the Victorian Period of England. It is a novel which tells the story of a child's maturation into adulthood. Jane's developing personality has been shaped by her rough childhood. She has been influenced by many people and experiences. As a woman of her time, Jane has had to deal with the strain of physical appearance. This has a great effect on her...

A Critical Analysis On Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre

1060 words - 4 pages Jane Eyre is a novel that presents many views on religion through its various characters. Charlotte Bronte successfully employs several characters throughout the novel, who each have a distinct view on religion, specifically Christianity. These characters include Mr. Brocklehurst, Eliza Reed, Helen Burns,

An objective analysis of JANE EYRE by Charlotte Bronte

1139 words - 5 pages Charlotte Bronte's novel, Jane Eyre, is a classic for one main reason; it has stood the test of time. R.W. Emerson stated this truth quite accurately, "Never read a book that is not a year old." From 1847 at its origin to 2003, where one senior's grade depends on it, Jane Eyre has many relevant and insightful points for all generations.Jane...

EMMA,(Jane Austen) Miss Bates character analysis

592 words - 2 pages In the novel Emma, the author, Jane Austen, uses many different techniques to characterize Miss Bates as a woman with no intellect, but a very kind heart. Miss Bates in a humorous character who is loved and loving.      Austen’s diction is one such technique used to characterize Miss Bates. Miss Bates is a “contented” old woman with certain “cheerfulness” to her nature. Miss Bates always has good intentions and is always...

Character Analysis of Emma in Jane Austen's "Emma"

1134 words - 5 pages `Emma' was written by Jane Austen in 1816. In all her novels, she is primarily a moral writer, striving to establish criteria of sound judgement and right conduct in human life. In Emma she presents her lesson so astutely and so dramatically, with such a minimum of exposition, that she places extreme demands upon the reader's perceptiveness. Emma was her fourth novel. Lord David Cecil described it as `Jane Austen's profoundest comedy'. It...

Feminism & Jane Eyre

1589 words - 6 pages Jane Eyre is a Feminist Novel In the novel Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte, there is an ample amount of evidence to suggest that the tone of Jane Eyre is in fact a feminist...

Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre"

3679 words - 15 pages "Jane Eyre" was published in 1847 under the androgynous pseudonym of "Currer Bell." The publication was followed by widespread success. Utilizing two literary traditions, the Bildungsroman and the Gothic novel, "Jane Eyre" is a powerful narrative with profound themes concerning genders, family, passion, and identity. It is unambiguously one of the...

The Significance of Jane Eyre's Relationship With Helen Burns

3273 Words14 Pages

The Significance of Jane Eyre's Relationship With Helen Burns

Jane Eyre is a classical novel written in 1947 by Charlotte Bronte, who at the time was also known as "Currer Bell". This timeless piece is based on the life of an orphaned girl named Jane Eyre who begins her life under the care of an Aunt, Mrs. Reed. Both Jane's parents have died within only a year of her birth leaving Mrs. Reed with the responsibility of Jane's well being. However, Mrs. Reeds treatment towards Jane is purely absurd and only provides the child with the bare necessities of life, such as food, clothes and shelter.

Her Aunt as well as her only cousins resent Jane. She is an outcast, but nevertheless at only the age of…show more content…

She dies of consumption and Jane is left alone with Helen dead in her arms.

The importance of friendship is considered a significant element throughout this noel. Soon after Jane Eyre joined Lowood, she meets Helen Burns, She was the only person who was consistently nice to Jane. Ever since the first night when Helen provided Jane with food, Jane realized that Helen was a kind-hearted and noble person and decided therefore that Helen was her first and best friend.

In contrast to Helen's personality, Jane has the total opposite approach to life. She is short tempered and will say what she thinks despite the circumstances. She is sincere, straightforward and does not fear to articulate her point of view however fallacious it may be.

One factor of "Jane Eye" which interests the reader is the relationship between Jane, her Aunt and her cousins, compared to Jane's relationship with Helen. Despite the blood relation between Jane and her aunt and cousins, they treat Jane with sincere disrespect and animosity.

"Then Mrs. Reed subjoined: 'Take her away to the red-room, and lock her in there'. Four hands were immediately laid upon me, and I was borne upstairs".

Jane's Aunt is a selfish woman and despite knowing the fact that Jane has no other relative, she still lacks any sympathetic feeling towards her. Jane

Show More


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *