August 24th, 2021

Romantic Passion and Social Justice

These are a series of lectures that are now available on Audible:
The Brontës: Romantic Passion and Social Justice
by Deborah Denenholz Morse, The Great Courses
Narrated by: Deborah Denenholz Morse
Length: 5 hrs and 39 mins

Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Brontë created some of the greatest works of 19th-century English literature. How did these three young women, born into a humble parsonage on the isolated moors of Northern England, write such striking work? What influenced them? How did they get their stories out into the world? Why do their novels continue to grip readers to this day?

These and other questions are what you will explore in The Brontës: Romantic Passion and Social Justice. With Brontë scholar Deborah Denenholz Morse, you will look at the lives of the three Brontë sisters, their family life, experiences, beliefs, motivations - and their many tragedies. As you look closely at the literary and real-world influences that shaped them, you will get a deeper understanding of the astonishing talent and deep drive that pushed these three sisters to write novels like Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. These stories - often full of wind-swept drama and tinged with both personal and Romantic darkness - have gone on to influence the Western literary tradition far beyond what the Brontës themselves could have ever predicted.

The Brontës were deeply influenced by the world around them. Looking into their lives and work, you will get insight into the causes and events that shaped these phenomenal writers - not only their religious and Romantic influences, but also the social justice movements of their age, from women’s rights and anti-poverty campaigns to slavery abolition and early efforts to curb animal cruelty. You will see how their work transcended mere social commentary or embellished autobiography and left their mark on the social and literary trends that would emerge after them.
The W&M college gives further information:
For years, Professor Deborah Denenholz Morse’s classes on Victorian fiction and the Brontës —the famous literary sisters whose works were published form 1846-1855 — have been popular with W&M students from a variety of majors.
Now, anyone can experience Morse’s fascinating lectures through her new course on Audible, “The Brontës: Romantic Passion and Social Justice.” The 10-session series was produced by The Great Courses.