Wuthering Heights Essay

1471 words - 6 pages


Lockwood is the narrator of the story and the reader follows him during his encounter with Heathcliff and his forced stay at the manor Wuthering Heights. There, he meets the ghost Catherine Linton who foreshadows the coming story. Once home at Thrushcross Grange, Lockwood inquires Nelly, his housekeeper, about Heathcliff and the mysteries surrounding him. Through a series of diary entries, Lockwood dictates what he heard from Nelly who is remembering from her childhood.
It began with Mr. Earnshaw who had brought an orphaned boy called Healthcliff to raise with his children Hindley and Catherine. Catherine and Heathcliff become close, but there remains animosity between Hindley ...view middle of the document...

Isabella falls in love with Heathcliff and he only plays along because he is obsessed with revenge against Edgar. Eventually, Cathy dies leaving a daughter, Catherine, in her place. Her tragic death causes Heathcliff to cry for her ghost to remain. Isabella has a child, but under constant abuse by her husband, she eventually runs away. Hindley dies the same way Heathcliff once began, uneducated, gruff, and dark. His death leaves the estate in Heathcliff’s possession.
Now, Heathcliff’s scheme is to have Linton, his own son, and Catherine, Cathy’s daughter, fall in love in order to acquire Thrushcross Grange. He attempts to accomplish this by kidnapping Cathy and forcing her to marry Linton on the spot. Soon after, Linton and Edgar die which gives Thrushcross Grange to Heathcliff.
Hareton and Cathy are now under one roof and what was Heathcliff’s ultimate goal to bring harm to the children of enemies, he cannot bring himself to do as he recognizes similarities between the illiterate Hareton and the beautiful Cathy to himself and Cathy.
Heathcliff dies soon after leaving the estate to Cathy and Hareton with a sense of purification after all his sinful deeds.
Character Analysis

Heathcliff—Main character of this story. It is easy to believe that his evil acts are only those of vengeance stemming from his deep love for Cathy. But still, it is difficult to understand why and how his behavior can result in any form of self-gratification when he is only in more turmoil after every sinister deed. He recognizes this himself only at the end of the book when the true goodness of true love itself is revealed again to him through Cathy and Hareton, and he chooses not to abolish it most probably because he wishes to see love succeed, unlike the events that passed between Cathy and himself. There are also connections between the illiterate and poor versus educated and wealthy. Different characters represent either side in different ways. Heathcliff experiences a transformation from the gruff orphan to the handsome rich.

Catherine—Often described as beautiful, she falls in love with Heathcliff but takes actions against their future happiness by marrying another man. Her motives are understandable yet are obviously not her true desires as she dies with Heathcliff’s name on her lips. Her young, shallow, mindset that trapped her in her marriage seems to be set in this book to prove a point: love conquers money, wealth, fame, and gentility. A message she learned when too late.

Edgar—The man that Catherine chooses over Heathcliff has the gentleman-like behavior she wished to have for reputation’s sake. Overall, Edgar comes off as gentle yet weak, kind but vulnerable. He is unable to properly counter Heathcliff’s acts of vengeance nor protect his own daughter even though he loves her greatly and dotes on her.

Story Analysis

It is difficult to decide whether the novel is centered around revenge or rebellion. Are Heathcliff’s actions...

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