BBC Bitesize - GCSE English Literature - Characters - AQA - Revision 4
Everything you ever wanted to know about St. John Rivers in Jane Eyre, after marriage; and that to twelve months' rapture would succeed a lifetime of regret. Marriage to St John would sacrifice passion for principle. Her unconscious goal of fitting in is in some ways completed after Jane has found the Rivers. ( SPARKNOTES); Contributes to the theme of religion in Jane Eyre. Jane Eyre is largely the story of Jane becoming an increasingly Christian St. John's behavior parallels Jane's — he argues for curbing one's romantic, raising questions about the nature and goals of Christian virtue in Brontë's world. pleasure from human relationships, or indeed from anything but his.
Leads Jane to understand that a large part of personal freedom is a relationship of mutual emotional dependence. Marriage to St John would sacrifice passion for principle. Allows Jane to see that relationships don't function on practicality and logic alone the reasons she left Thornfield.
- St John Rivers
- Reading Jane Eyre: can we truly understand Charlotte Brontë or her heroine today?
Jane's rejection of St John's proposal spurs her to return to Rochester, her one chance for spiritual passion. Novel ends with St John, portraying the hand of God in the novel and how Jane is following her own religious ideas: It also suggests how Jane would have ended up had she chosen Rivers over Rochester: Reminds the reader what Jane has gained by losing St John.
His role is also far more literal: Her unconscious goal of fitting in is in some ways completed after Jane has found the Rivers. He does this, as he believes God has called him to become a missionary.
He is extremely pious and determined in his goal to become a missionary in India. He proposes to Jane, as he believes Jane will be a good missionary's wife. Jane refuses and St John is confused, oblivious to Jane's argument that she cannot marry without love.
How is St John like this? Evidence Analysis Determined St John believes that God wants him to become a missionary and serve the people of India.
St. John Rivers and Christian Piety
He is willing to sacrifice his feelings for Rosamund and his happiness to do this. His chest heaved once, as if his large heart, weary of despotic constriction, had expanded, despite the will, and made a vigorous bound for the attainment of liberty. But he curbed it, I think, as a resolute rider would curb a riding steed.
St John loves Miss Oliver dearly, as his 'large heart' moves when she is in his presence.
I watch your career with interest, because I consider you a specimen of a diligent, orderly, energetic woman: As his disciple I adopt his pure, his merciful, his benignant doctrines.
I am sworn to spread them.
Nonetheless, for Jane the Christian in him wins out, and she ends the book by valorizing and praising this behavior which is so alien to her and so impossible for her to accept as her own: The last letter I received from him [St.
John] drew from my eyes human tears, and yet filled my heart with Divine joy. His own words are a pledge of this: