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Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

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I have recently started reading this on my mobile....free book! I am reading it properly for the first time and so far so good, except when Joseph speaks then I cant understand a word  :angry:

I had to read his lines out loud to understand the words (although it probably depends on your accent as well). I feel sorry for the non-British who have tried to read his parts. :P

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People claim to do many things "in the name of" love, God, or country.  That doesn't make it true. 

True love does not do injurious things to the loved one.  Because someone claims that doesn't make it so.

You wrote it before me! Spot on!

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Surely whether love is "true" or not is subjective and depends on each individual person? Someone may kill others in the name of true love - who are we to say whether or not their love is true?

I don't believe in true love (or true anything) but I think Heathcliff did seem to love Catherine, in the way he knew best. He never experienced love as a child, so he expressed his love for Catherine in the only way he knew how. Perhaps for him love was synonymous with obsession. I often think those two words go well together.

Real love isn't just a feeling, it is backed up by sound principles. That makes is very possible to measure its "trueness". Otherwise it is self-indugent and often skewed.

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I am currently reading this book. I started reading a couple days ago and I'm about 200 pages in, so I don't think its a particularly hard book to read. So far Cathy has some delightful quotes about love, which are so true but heartbreaking at the same time. 

 

Joseph is definitely a struggle to read. I figure if I get the gist of it, I'm doing pretty well.  :D

 

P.S. so far I actually like the characters. . . all of them. They're cruel and terrible, but I love that. 

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I started this last night as well. I'm only 5 chapters in, so it's early days, but I'm not finding it too difficult to read.

 

Agree with what you say about Joseph - he's a bit of a struggle! :D

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Real love isn't just a feeling, it is backed up by sound principles. That makes is very possible to measure its "trueness". Otherwise it is self-indugent and often skewed.

How would you measure the 'trueness' of love?

 

Who are we to judge whether someone else's love is true or not? For example, I personally believe in arranged marriage, something I know isn't very popular in the Western culture. I believe that people in such relationships still love each other - other people would argue with me and say that isn't true love.

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How would you measure the 'trueness' of love?

 

Who are we to judge whether someone else's love is true or not? For example, I personally believe in arranged marriage, something I know isn't very popular in the Western culture. I believe that people in such relationships still love each other - other people would argue with me and say that isn't true love.

 

I think the only way that love is "true" is if the person feels it. So in the case of arranged marriages, if that is all the person has ever known and they view their spouse as a responsibility to love I believe that in their mind they truly love that person. 

 

Love is abstract. There is no tangible evidence of love. Couples could show the physical signs of being in love without any real love in their hearts. It's all about what is on the inside. 

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How would you measure the 'trueness' of love?

 

Who are we to judge whether someone else's love is true or not? For example, I personally believe in arranged marriage, something I know isn't very popular in the Western culture. I believe that people in such relationships still love each other - other people would argue with me and say that isn't true love.

I use the word "true" not in the tacky romance context but rather meaning "genuine". As such it can never be just an emotion but is backed up by principles. I.e. true love will not be self-indulgent by satisfying one's own urges at the expense of the person they allegedly love.

 

For that matter, I can well believe that arranged marriages can work exactly for that reason. The couple have to do their best to get on and may well in the process grow to love each other. But that would be based on their knowledge of each other, not feelings out of control.

 

In contrast, I know of a woman who would beat up the daughter whenever she was late to get home. The reason was her obsessive "love" and therefore fear of losing the daughter. The feelings in question were no doubt intense, "true" if you like. But would you say the bruises at the time and the lasting effects of such an unbalanced relationship are the result of something positive such as real love?

 

I have no interest in or sympathy for free adults who remain caught up in such madness and suffer the results.

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I.e. true love will not be self-indulgent by satisfying one's own urges at the expense of the person they allegedly love.

Do you think such an emotion exists? Aren't all emotions self-indulgent in some way? I personally do not believe in things like unconditional love - as human beings, we are not perfect.

 

But would you say the bruises at the time and the lasting effects of such an unbalanced relationship are the result of something positive such as real love?

Does real love exist? :P We all experience life differently. What is 'real love' to one person may not be 'real' to the next. Our idea of what is love is developed through our childhood and the way our parents interacted with us. Therefore, some people may see this type of behaviour as real love, as this is the only type of love they have ever known.

 

I have no interest in or sympathy for free adults who remain caught up in such madness and suffer the results.

Yet those adults may truly believe that what they are doing is out of the goodness of their heart. They may believe they are showing their love through their behaviour. They may not be acting out of spite or hatred, but love in their minds.

Edited by Angury

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Do you think such an emotion exists? Aren't all emotions self-indulgent in some way? I personally do not believe in things like unconditional love - as human beings, we are not perfect.

 

 

Does real love exist? :P We all experience life differently. What is 'real love' to one person may not be 'real' to the next. Our idea of what is love is developed through our childhood and the way our parents interacted with us. Therefore, some people may see this type of behaviour as real love, as this is the only type of love they have ever known.

 

 

Yet those adults may truly believe that what they are doing is out of the goodness of their heart. They may believe they are showing their love through their behaviour. They may not be acting out of spite or hatred, but love in their minds.

Not sure how to chop up a quote. Anyway, on the first section, yes I do believe that unselfish love exists, though it is rare because it is more rational (or at least has the ability to be) than emotional. Yes, uncontrolled emotions are often selfish, which is my whole issue with emotional displays. Never mind making important decision based on feelings running rampant.

 

As for what people experienced as children; while it shapes us to a degree, everyone is free to analyze and assess and do make better choices. We're not put on an unchangeable set of rails for life which predestines our behaviour. Most things in life are nothing but habits, which one can step away from. But it means taking responsibility which many are unwilling to do.

 

On your third point, see above. As you say, not all bad actions are the result of malice. But they're usually "crimes" of omission, to question one's emotions and impulses.

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I agree that we need to take more responsibility for our actions, especially as we seem to be in a "blame culture" (I do this myself). Although I'm not sure how we can encourage people to become more responsible.

 

Yes, uncontrolled emotions are often selfish, which is my whole issue with emotional displays.

What do you mean by this?

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I agree that we need to take more responsibility for our actions, especially as we seem to be in a "blame culture" (I do this myself). Although I'm not sure how we can encourage people to become more responsible.

 

 

What do you mean by this?

I meant that I don't have a whole lot of respect for unchecked emotions guiding people's actions.

 

Btw, I very much agree with you about (especially current) culture. But as you say, until someone is willing to be analytical and self-aware in themselves, nothing else can be done.

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One of those 'must read' books,that I tackled at around the age of

seventeen or eighteen;it failed to 'work' for me. I could not engage

with the characters or the plot. I finished it, but it left a void in my

mind,that I had somehow 'not got it' or understood it properly.

So I attempted to read it again in my thirties. I found it deadly dull

and unmoving,and abandoned it for something I would enjoy a lot

more!

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 (This is copied and pasted from my review on my reading blog, I thought it should be here too.)

 

Wow what a strange, visceral book this is!  When I first started reading it, I didn't get on with it immediately as the author chose to write it in a very strange way. The story of the two central characters, Heathcliff (he has no other name) and Catherine Earnshaw, is told in the first person by a servant, Ellen (Nellie) Dean, to a visitor Mr Lockwood. Nellie's tale is therefore all just reportage of events in the past.

However, after a break I picked the book back up again and this plot device then seemed very clever to me, for as the book goes on Nelly is right at the centre of events. Her conversations with Heathcliff and Cathy are related naturally as they happened. Nelly is often forced to be the go between of the main characters, and yet her simple goodness and sense of right and wrong seem to save her from the chaos that destroys everyone else.

I consider this book a fantasy, as the characters and their naked emotions are too grotesque to be real; also it is very Gothic. I enjoyed it a lot.

 I really got into the characters. Heathcliff is an amazing creation. Cathy Earnshaw I didn't much like, but she was very believable, I hated little Linton.

I could forgive Heathcliff for most of what he did; but I couldn't forgive him for what he did to Hareton. So I was very glad at the ending.  

 

(Interesting conversation going on here about the nature of love and stuff!)

 

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I read this in my late teens, and can remember almost nothing about it; nothing but its overwhelming bleakness and claustrophobia.

 

I can recall just one scene:  Cathy, sat by a blazing kitchen fire at 5am, reading a book by the light of the flames.  Somehow the imagery of that always struck me.

 

I so want to re-read this, but, as always, I have too many other (unread!) books on my shelves.   :D

Edited by Onion Budgie

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I read this in my late teens, and can remember almost nothing about it; nothing but its overwhelming bleakness and claustrophobia.

 

I can recall just one scene:  Cathy, sat by a blazing kitchen fire at 5am, reading a book by the light of the flames.  Somehow the imagery of that always struck me.

 

I so want to re-read this, but, as always, I have too many other (unread!) books on my shelves.   :D

 

It is certainly bleak. The oppressive weather is another plot device and almost a character in itself.

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(Interesting conversation going on here about the nature of love and stuff!)

Very interesting, thanks for posting your review. :)

 

I completely forgot about this conversation about love, and actually miss it. I feel like I've developed different opinions on the topic since I last posted a year ago. :P

 

Oh, how we mature.

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You must stick with Wuthering Heights. The atmosphere becomes more Gothic as the novel progresses, and in the context of  its time it was a really revolutionary read.

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I liked Wuthering Heights a lot more than Jane Eyre, although my opinion of Jane Eyre is coloured by having to study it for O level at school. WH is very different and original. It's very poetic writing. I did not have too much trouble with Joseph because I've read the James Herriot books. Sadly, I don't think too many people speak like that any more.

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