I’ve recently started reading a rather famous book that somehow, I never attacked before.
It’s chock-ful of social ills. I’m only half-way through, and thus far we have:
Child Abuse (babies are called “it” until the age of toddlerhood, and then mostly neglected)
Animal Abuse (a puppy was hung by a hankie to shut it up)
Predatory Lending Practices
Rampant Incivility to Others
The book? Wuthering Heights.
The characters? Mostly landed gentry.
That Emily Bronte could really spin a yarn! I wish she had differentiated among her characters a bit better – too many have names beginning with H. Other than the famous Heathcliff, we also have Hareton and Hindley, and when they’re mixed up in the same scenes, it gets confusing. I am grateful for the occasional appearance of a Joseph or an Edgar.
People speak brutally to each other. Not only the masters to the servants, but vice versa. So much for the genteel British stereotype. The language and bluntness would fit right into the stands at a Man United match today. Bronte’s characters are merely soccer hooligans and Cockney yobbos, in flimsier clothing and bigger houses.
This is all a revelation to me. I’m reveling in the psychodrama, and enjoying how the cold, blustery, rainy November outside my window is matching the mood of the words on the page.What are your favorite fall/winter books? If you’ve read Wuthering Heights, what is your opinion of it? Just add a SPOILER ALERT if you’re going to give anything away – remember, I’m not done yet.