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Jane Eyre and social justice: How to survive a (Victorian) ‘witch’ trial

Diver, AR (2020) Jane Eyre and social justice: How to survive a (Victorian) ‘witch’ trial. Preternature: Critical and Historical Studies on the Preternatural, 9 (2). pp. 209-242. ISSN 2161-2196

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This article argues that Jane Eyre was both ‘witch’ and witch-trialled. Her ability to perform ‘witchcraft’ (within the framework of Victorian folklore) enabled her to endure and ultimately triumph over a litany of ordeals often associated with the witch-trials, namely, unjust accusations, societal and familial exclusion, poverty, abandonment, and physical and psychological abuse. She overcomes all obstacles with the help of heartfelt incantations (some spoken aloud, others silently willed ), control of the elements (fire, water, storms and moonlight feature prominently), innate occult abilities (extra-sensory perception and supernaturally sharp prescience) and the summoning of folklore and ‘familiars’ (human, animal, spectral) to assist her along the way.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: witchtrial; Jane Eyre; social justice; Victorian; folklore; inequality
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GR Folklore
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Divisions: Law
Publisher: Penn State University Press
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2019 15:14
Last Modified: 13 Jan 2022 14:45
DOI or ID number: 10.5325/preternature.9.2.0209
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/11860
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