"Published in 1847, Emily Brontë’s only novel Wuthering Heights is an
evergreen classic. A passionate tale of love between Catherine Earnshaw
and Heathcliff, the novel challenged Victorian ideals of morality, class,
religion and gender inequality.
Heathcliff, an orphan, brought to Wuthering Heights by Mr. Earnshaw,
represents the quintessential Byronic hero—brooding and enigmatic,
whose social status is foregrounded by his lack of a first name. Spurned
by Catherine and humiliated by her brother, Hindley, Heathcliff leaves the
Heights, only to return later as a revenge-seeking, wealthy and polished
man. Catherine chooses to marry Edgar Linton, an antithesis to Heathcliff.
What follows is a series of disastrous events in which the characters are
consumed by their tragic fate.
Evocative and gothic, the novel was initially termed ‘abhorrent’ and later
appreciated for its originality and poetic grandeur."
About Emily Bronte
Born on 30 July 1818 in Thornton, Yorkshire, England, Emily Jane
Brontë was the younger sister of Charlotte Brontë, and the fifth of six children. Emily Brontë was considered an enigmatic literary figure and remains a difficult subject for biographers till date.
Her only nove —Wuthering Heights—was published under the pseudonym ‘Ellis Bell’. In April 1821, Emily’s mother died of cancer a few months after the family
moved to Haworth. Thereafter, her mother’s sister came to live with the family. At the tender
age of six, Emily joined the Clergy Daughters’ School at Cowan Bridge along with her sisters
Charlotte, Elizabeth and Maria. Unfortunately, their father had to withdraw both Charlotte and Emily after elder sisters Elizabeth and Maria became critically ill at school and eventually died of
tuberculosis in 1825. First published in London in 1847, Wuthering Heights appeared as part of a
three-volume collection including younger sister Anne Brontë’s debut novel Agnes Grey (under the pseudonym ‘Acton Bell’). Critics and reviewers were perplexed at the structure of
Wuthering Heights; some even described it as a work of fiction that could have been written only by
a man. Emily’s real name was printed on the title page much later—posthumously, in 1850 for a
commercial edition. Soon after the release of the novel, Emily’s health—she had been battling tuberculosis— deteriorated. On 19 December 1848, Emily Brontë died in Haworth, Yorkshire,