‘During Jane Eyre, theme of appearance and reality is the cornerstone of the novel’
During the novel, Jane has appeared to suppress her feelings of being an independent woman. Although, this is what Jane appears to want in reality. Feminism at the time was not very good and not very up to scratch. Women were seen as an ornament for men, and men believed that women should do what they say. They were almost treating women like children.
When Jane was a child at Gateshead, she is described as ‘disobedient and passionate’. From this I can tell that she is already rejecting the way in which women are supposed to behave at that time. This shows the appearance of Jane, as being a disobedient child who should be treated badly. Although in reality, she is just standing up for herself, due to the Reed’s mistreatment of her.
When Jane goes off to Lowood with Brokelhurst, we as the reader sense that Jane’s life is about to get a lot better. We can sense this by Jane saying ‘Even for me, life had its gleams of sunshine.’ This makes us feel glad for Jane, as we have seen her miss-justice at Gateshead. In reality Jane has no clue what she is letting herself in for at Lowood. Mr Brokelhurst is a Calvinist, so he believes that Jane is not going to change at Lowood, and will continue on her path to hell. At Lowood, Jane meets Helen Burns. In appearance, the two get on like a house of fire, but in reality they are exceptionally different. Helen keeps quiet about her thoughts and conforms with the other students at Lowood, whereas Jane speaks her mind and does not feel the pressure to conform.
In conclusion I agree that appearance and reality is the cornerstone of the novel, with lots of hidden contrasting between the two.