Get help from the best in academic writing.

Understanding Family in Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights

Understanding Family in Wuthering Heights

Jerome Bump, author of “Family-Systems Theory, Addiction, and Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights”, analyzes the relationships of the “closed family unit” to understand the relationships of the novel. A better understanding of Wuthering Heights can be seen in Bump’s examples of the contagious nature of hostility, abuse and addiction upon the two generations. The only escape for the second generation from the negative impression from the first generation is through intervention from outside the closed family unit.


At the beginning of the novel, Lockwood pays a visit to Heathcliff. What Lockwood finds is the isolated, second generation of a closed family unit. Not only isolated from society, the family is hostile amongst themselves and towards outsiders. Lockwood immediately senses hostility, and is treated like an unwanted outsider, as opposed to being welcomed by a more open family unit.


Hostility can be transferred from person to person, like a virus. The effects of hostility on Lockwood as Heathcliff’s unwelcome guest represent how the family unit also reflects the same hostile nature. Lockwood imitates the hostility he senses in the family. In Lockwood’s dream, a young girl’s apparition appears to him at the widow. As the ghost bids Lockwood to ” let me in,” Lockwood replies ” I’ll never let you in” ( Bump citing Wuthering Heights). He then cut the ghost’s wrist with broken glass. Not only has hostility affected Lockwood’s actions through his subconscious, he rejects opening himself up to an outsider.


The repetition of names from generation to generation is a clue that other elements are repe…

… middle of paper …

…eneration is able to pull out of repetition and turn the closed family unit into an open family unit. This is evident at the end of the novel when Lockwood returns to Wuthering Heights. Instead of an isolated, hostile family, Lockwood finds the door and lattice wide open for visitors to enter.

Work Cited

Bump, Jerome (Prof. Of English, Univ. of Texas-Austin). “Family-Systems Theory, Addiction, and Emily Wuthering Heights.” Part 6 of The Family Dynamics of Victorian Fiction. [Rpt. Excerpts from “The Family Dynamics in the Reception of Art,” Style 31.2 (1997): 328-350.]

…From The Victorian Web: Literature, History,

Exploring God Through The Hound of Heaven

Exploring God Through The Hound of Heaven

Francis Thompson lived in London at the end of the nineteenth century. He led a life that was often out of accord with the will of God, but repented near the end of his life and found God. He wrote an autobiographical poem, “The Hound of Heaven”, based on his experiences. By analyzing this poem and Thompson’s message, we can learn the truth of the statement “God’s greatest attribute is His mercy.”

Thompson’s troubles kicked off in the Soho district of London. The district, notorious for prostitution, was embraced by Thompson in the hope that he could find his life’s meaning in sexual pleasure. Because he was afraid that following God might deprive him of other earthly pleasures and pursuits, he turned his back on God. Yet God followed.

Next, Thompson turned to astrology. He sought answers to his questions and solutions to his problems in the stars. He began to live for the night and detested daylight. However, he soon realized that the stars were loyal only to God, so he abandoned his interest in them. Yet still Go…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.