Wuthering Heights Essay

742 WordsDec 17, 20083 Pages
Nelly Dean, the principal narrator of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights, relates the tale of two houses, Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange. She tells the story as a first hand witness of the events, but to what extent can the reader trust her narration? Being the servant at Wuthering Heights, and later on at Thrushcross Grange, Nelly becomes very involved and interferes with many of the characters. She also acts as a mother figure to many of the younger characters, which leads to bias. Nelly’s depiction of certain events may not be fully correct due to her own perceptions. Nelly is not only a witness to events in the story, but a part of them. Her own actions often affect what occurs throughout the story. She is prone to interference when delivering letters between Linton and Cathy, and telling Edgar of their relationship. When she brings Catherine a letter from Heathcliff, she interferes by allowing him to see her despite Edgar’s wishes against it. Nelly also interferes by withholding information from some characters. She fails to tell Edgar when Catherine becomes ill or about Linton and Cathy’s relationship until it is already well advanced. This involvement in the story greatly affects events. But does this qualify her as an unreliable witness? There really is no mother figure in Wuthering Heights, and therefore Nelly takes on a significant mother role to many of the characters. She aids both Catherine and Heathcliff with many of their troubles. She takes care of Heathcliff during his retaliation against Hindley and helps Catherine when she is angry with Edgar. Cathy and Hareton were basically born motherless, leaving Nelly the only one to care for them. She grew with these characters and spent much of her time with them, learning about their lives and knowing much of what went on. She knew the deep parts of most everyone’s life, and for this reason,

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