Agnes grey

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“Agnes Grey” by Anne Bronte is a strongly autobiographical novel portraying the world of a governess in the mid-nineteen century and examining social manners and the lack of moral perceptions. Drawing on her own experience the author of this book tries to reveal the position of a young, educated girl who sets out into the world to take up the only respectable career open to her – that of governess. As a result, she is forced to confront repellent cruelty, materialism and other social ills. Such fundamentals of this impressive narrative prose suggest the reader the most important theme of the novel – the intricate world of a governess in the mid-nineteenth century.
The narrator, Agnes Grey, is the youngest daughter of a poor north country clergyman. She and her sister Mary are brought up in a strict seclusion and are educated at home by their highly accomplished mother. However, after a disastrous financial speculation, the family becomes impoverished. Agnes concerned for her family’s financial welfare and eager to expand her horizons, sets out into the world and makes her own way as a governess. She embarks on her venture with optimistic enthusiasm and faith of being successful. However, her dreams turn out to be a nightmare when she becomes a live-in governess with the Bloomfield family at Wellwood House, and is forced to live a spiritually miserable life, as well as to be the witness of low moral perceptions of distinct people.
First of all, she faces up the most unruly children one can imagine: “…they knew no shame; they scorned no authority <…> had no hearts…” (Bronte, 1998, p.39) Master Tom Bloomfield, Mary Ann and Fanny persistently disobey, defy, tease and torment their teacher. Moreover, Agnes is not empowered to inflict any punishment; her only weapons were “Patience, Firmness, and Perseverance” (Bronte, 1998, p. 22)
Children’s behavior with other people, especially with the inexperienced young governess, and...