How does Lockwood describe the Yorkshire section of England in Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte?  

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jmj616 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

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In Chapter I of Wuthering Heights, the narrator--a man named Lockwood--describes the section of Yorkshire, England where the novel's action will take place. He begins:

This is certainly a beautiful country! In all England, I do not believe that I could have fixed on a situation so completely removed from the stir of society. A perfect misanthropist's heaven...

Lockwood has come to the region seeking peace and quiet.  He believes that he has found a perfect place for a misanthrope--someone who dislikes human company.  This is a foreshadowing, of course, of the personality of Heathcliff, a man who is difficult with everyone, including his beloved Catherine.

Later in the chapter, Lockwood discusses the name of Heathcliff's house, Wuthering Heights.  He tells us that "Wuthering" is a local Yorkshire dialect word that refers to an "atmospheric tumult to which [the house] is exposed in stormy weather."  Here, again, the setting hints at the action that will take place later: there will be stormy love affairs and stormy conflicts at Wuthering Heights.

For further comments on how the novel's setting reflects its action and themes, see the second link below.

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