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Teachers and professors: Get the most from your time in the classroom when you use this lesson plan for Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. In addition to providing comprehensive character analyses, this lesson plan offers guidance through the novel's primary themes, including passion, independence, and forgiveness. Examples of guided discussion and study questions from this lesson plan include the following:
- How does Bronte immediately reveal Jane's situation to the reader in Jane Eyre? Before the end of the first page of the novel, we are aware Jane is excluded from the Reed family.
- Why do you think Jane is treated so unfairly in Jane Eyre? She is obviously not a child of Mrs. Reed, and the lady dislikes her. The Reed children are spoiled and selfish and resent Jane's presence. They tease and abuse her cruelly and with impunity.
- What does Jane mean when she says she was "rather out of [her] self"? Her defiance to unjust punishment occurs because she has nothing to lose. Once she releases her anger and frustration, she has some trouble controlling herself and only calms down under the threat of being tied down.
- On looking back, how does Jane understand Mrs. Reed's treatment of her? She thinks if she had been a pretty child with a careless and romping nature, the Reeds could have been kind to her. Her temperament was not such that she could feel friendly towards the Reed children; she did not like them. She did not "fit in" to the family, and Mrs. Reed could not care for her.
- In Jane Eyre, why does Mrs. Reed make Jane stay in the red room? She thinks Jane is trying to trick them into letting her out; she is repulsed by Jane's violence and supposed artifice.
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