Novels – Plot of the Story
“Majority of the time novels will use hate to create havoc in the plot of the story. Wuthering Heights uses Heathcliff’s hate toward the other characters to insert conflict in the story. Wuthering Heights illuminates the source of Heathcliff’s hate as well what effect it has on the other characters throughout the story. Heathcliff’s relationships with other characters also suggests the theme that hate only breeds hate. Heathcliff never finds peace through his revenge. With every act of revenge he commits he is slowly hurting himself and the others around him.
The theme of revenge is very important to the entire novel. As an orphan growing up at Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff is abused by Hindley. The reason for Hindley’s hatred is that his father has found favor in Heathcliff, an orphan, rather than his own flesh and blood. When Hindley’s father dies his mistreatment of Heathcliff grows incredibly since he has gained power of the house. The only thing keeping Heathcliff stable is Catherine, his one bright spot in a dark life. She eventually leaves him and Heathcliff escapes the Heights. Once he returns he has a full plan of revenge for Hindley. The fact that he went away just to develop this plan and amass the resources needed just reinforces the theme that Bronte was trying to communicate with the readers. Hate just breeds Hate. “So, from the very beginning, he bred bad feeling in the house; and at Mrs. Earnshaw’s death, which happened in less than two years after, the young master had learned to regard his father as an oppressor rather than a friend, and Heathcliff as a usurper of his parent’s affections and his privileges; and he grew bitter with brooding over these injuries.” (Chapter 4, Page 35).
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Many people may argue who may be the trigger for heathcliff’s revenge between Hindley and Catherine. Many people forget about Catherine. She is the woman Heathcliff loves and love can lead to dangerous things. Without his desire for revenge, Heathcliff would have no purpose, so this becomes a huge motivator for his character. When he cannot have the woman he loves, who does he turn to? Revenge. The fact that he turns so quickly to revenge just shows that that is all that matters to him. “”I seek no revenge on you,”” replied Heathcliff, less vehemently. “”That’s not the plan. The tyrant grinds down his slaves and they don’t turn against him; they crush those beneath them.”” (Chapter 11, Page 112). This quote shows that Heathcliff still has feelings for Catherine and it also shows that his whole reason for going away was to formulate his plan of revenge. This quote shows that vengeance has a firm grip on Heathcliff and it is not going to let him go soon.
Vengeance is the most imminent topic in Wuthering Heights. No one can find peace through revenge. The only thing that breeds hate is hate and that is clearly evident in Wuthering Heights. Ever since Heathcliff was an orphan boy brought home by Mr. Earnshaw he was mistreated by Hindley and that hate began to sprout within him. This continued for a very long time, the hate just growing and growing until Heathcliff embraced it and used it as a weapon against Hindley and his family. However, by embracing the hate Heathcliff became even more miserable than he was making Hindley. “So, from the very beginning, he bred bad feeling in the house; and at Mrs. Earnshaw’s death, which happened in less than two years after, the young master had learned to regard his father as an oppressor rather than a friend, and Heathcliff as a usurper of his parent’s affections and his privileges; and he grew bitter with brooding over these injuries.” (Chapter 4, Page 37). This quote completely sums up hate and revenge in the novel. Hate was never present, it was formed by the actions of the other characters. The actions of the characters, like Hindley, led to their downfall. I think what Bronte was trying to get at was to be careful about your actions because they speak louder than words.
In conclusion, Wuthering Heights is a novel that is riddled with hate and acts of revenge. The main theme that Bronte was trying to communicate with the reader’s is that actions speak louder than words. Bronte wants the readers to be weary about their actions and to treat everyone equally. Imagine if Hindley had done this, he would have saved himself a lot of trouble.”