The older Jane narrates the novel retrospectively in the first person, enabling a close focus on Jane’s internal monologue but with the benefit of reflective hindsight.
Language, form and structure
Jane Eyre (Grades 9–1)
is a Bildungsroman – an ‘education novel’ which recounts the development of a central character from childhood through to emotional maturity.
The Gothic mansion, a family secret, a ghostly presence and a vulnerable heroine are all features of the Gothic style.
Jane is often described using imagery of fairies or sprites as if she has an ‘airy’ quality, as does her name.
Fire and ice symbolise the opposing influences on Jane and opposing aspects of her own nature. Rochester and Rivers, and Bertha and Jane, also represent these opposites.