What would be the theme of Wuthering Heights and Great Expectations?

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lynnebh eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I am assuming you might be looking for themes that are similar in both works. In Wuthering Heights, there is the theme of love, revenge, violence and cruelty and class conflict. In Great Expectations, love, revenge, class conflict and justice are also important themes. These novels have differing focuses, however, because ambition is the strongest theme in Great Expectations whereas in Wuthering Heights the strongest theme is passion and revenge.

In both novels, class differences add to the conflicts. Heathcliff is an orphan who cannot be expected to compete with the wealthy Lintons and Earnshaws. Even when he makes a fortune, he is still of low class and not on the same level as Catherine Earnshaw. Pip receives a great deal of money, but it does not transform him into a gentleman and he can never really expect to be good enough for Estella, a fact that he only realizes as he gets older. Heathcliff's passion for Catherine turns him into a vengeful person just as Miss Havisham's being jilted turns her into a vengeful person. Miss Havisham wants to get even with all men so she raises Estella to be a loveless woman who hurts men. Heathcliff tries to ruin everyone he can in the Earnshaw and Linton families.

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Wuthering Heights

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