Tone Analysis Jane Eyre
Jane’s aunt Mrs. Reed is one of the few characters in the book who does not change at all. From beginning to end she is unrepentantly evil to poor Jane. Mrs. Reed’s weakness is her incredible jealousy of the love Jane conjured in her father. The tone is illuminated with diction, point of view and imagery to showcase the careless and hopeless situation Jane is in with her evil aunt.
Mrs. Reed never misses an opportunity to chastise Jane, she resents her because her husband always loved Jane more that his own children. Mrs. Reed’s word choice and diction affirm her hatred”this little girl has not quite the character and disposition I could wish” (32) she tells Mr. Brocklehurst. Mrs. Reed uses her word choice to humiliate Jane. Mrs. Reed cannot wait to be rid of Jane’s presence and sends her off to a school that she knows Jane is most certain to hate.
Throughout the novel we see the world from Jane’s point of view. In Jane’s point of view Mrs. Reed was contentious and uncaring “it was her nature to wound me cruelly: never was I happy in her presence” (33). Jane recognizes that Mrs. Reed withholds her caring and love from Jane and rejects any attempts at encouragement or compassion with regards to her. Even when Mrs. Reed is on her deathbed and asks for Jane to come back to the house Mrs. Reed never exhibits or shows any affection towards Jane, she is bitter and uncaring to the very end.
The melodramatic foreboding tone explores desolate and melancholy imagery to express Jane’s feeling of hopelessness in her situation. Jane learns that she will go to Lowood school to be trained in conformity “in that nursery of chosen plants — and I trust she will show herself grateful” (34). Jane, of course, isn’t really going to be turned into a plant. This imagery reinforces the somber uncompassionate future of being treated as nothing more than a potted plant. The fatalistic imagery shows how unsympathetic Mrs. Reed is towards Jane. The image of being compared to a plant creates a feeling of hopeless in her situation.