Ellen DeGeneres, Oprah Winfrey, and Tyra Banks, modern-day renowned television celebrities, are examples of strong, independent women who influence and inspire many people. In Charlotte Bronte’s novel Jane Eyre, the main character of Jane is an orphaned girl who feels abused and neglected living with the Reed family. As the story progresses and she gets older, she makes friends such as Helen Burns, the girl she met at Lowood, and sheds her feelings of loneliness. As she befriends more people, she overcomes her hesitant tendencies and expresses herself openly. In the same way as the aforementioned celebrities, Jane develops into a strong and confidant woman who ends up falling in love with Mr. Rochester. Jane is initially lonely and
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Rochester asks Jane a question, she answers, “I should be obliged to take time, sir, before I could give you an answer worthy of your acceptance” (127). This good example of Jane’s hesitance highlights the time she takes to analyze every word she responds with to avoid feeling foolish, something that changes through the story. Jane does not feel loved nor does she feel like she belongs, hence feeling uncomfortable, uncertain, and shy.
Jane's transformation was due mostly to her friendship with Helen Burns, whom she met at Lowood, an institution for educating orphans. While there, she instantly connects with Helen and in spite of being an orphan, loses her feelings of loneliness and abandonment. Jane had never met a girl like Helen before and feels glad to have been finally embraced and loved by someone. She never tires of being in the company of Helen and never dismisses Helen's qualities as a good friend. While Jane expresses these feelings to the reader, she stresses, “Yet, I never tired of Helen Burns, nor ever ceased to cherish for her a sentiment of attachment, as strong, tender, and respectful as any that ever animate my heart” (80). This illustrates how she changes into an accepted, confident individual. Although she felt lonely as an orphan she finds herself a companion, no longer feeling lonesome. Consequently, Jane overcomes her fear of being shy and learns to defend herself while expressing her feelings