Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Jason blogs for someone you love

This post includes important details about Jane Eyre; so if you didn’t read Jane Eyre in high school, you probably should before continuing.

It shouldn’t take long. If you bought it now and started reading immediately, you should finish by Friday. (At the rate I’m posting, I probably won’t have anything new up by then.)

Mr. Rochester, the hero of Jane Eyre, was voted the most romantic literary hero by British readers.

I guess locking your lunatic wife in the attic and not telling your girlfriend about her is romantic.

Don’t get me wrong. Mr. Rochester has game. He sweet talks women who are way out of his league (see: Ingram, Blanche) with nothing more than an enormous family fortune to aid him.

He recognizes Jane’s inner beauty, says all the right things and doesn’t stand on social expectations.

But he’s also a bit of a cad. I mean, he hires Jane to teach the bastard daughter of his lover. Furthermore, that lover is just one in a long line.

But, I suppose, this isn’t about being dependable. It’s about romance and Rochester is sincere and sweet. If that’s all the polled people want, Rochester provides it.

My personal favorite is farther down the list, Gabriel Oak of Far from the Madding Crowd. I consider loyalty and constancy the most romantic attributes of all. Oak is willing to wait an entire novel while Bathsheba Everdene plays pinball between less-deserving men. (Also, I’m a big Thomas Hardy fan. I’ve fallen for at least three Hardy heroines, including Bathsheba.)

But the voters picked the bad boy millionaire over the quiet shepherd. They always do.

Sidenote: the list is obviously Anglophilic. One of my favorites seems to be ignored because he’s not white enough: Florentino Ariza of Love in the Time of Cholera (though Ariza, admittedly, has many of the same defects as Mr. Rochester.)

-Jason Lea

P.S. I just spent 10 paragraphs rating romantic heroes. A less secure man might feel awkward.

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