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Wicked Gentlemen: A Comparison of Heathcliff in Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights and Huntingdon in Anne Brontë’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall


  • Jenny Rothman

Summary, in English

This thesis investigates similarities and differences between Emily Brontë’s Heathcliff and Anne Brontë’s Huntingdon. Moreover, their conduct is compared to eighteenth- and nineteenth-century masculinities. Neither of the two characters corresponds with ideal masculine behaviour. As the novels progress they become increasingly depraved. But the causes to their wickedness are not self-evident. However this thesis argues that the gentlemen’s experiences and environments produce their selfish and offensive conduct. The analysis entails examinations of Heathcliff’s and Huntingdon’s respective manliness, personality, childhood and relationships with other people. Furthermore, to highlight their unpleasant behaviour, they are compared to other male characters in the novels. This investigation concludes that Heathcliff’s decadence originates in the mistreatments he endures as a child, while Huntingdon’s fear of losing his status among his friends causes his debauchery. Moreover, Heathcliff’s anger is released by Catherine Earnshaw’s treachery, whereas Mrs Huntingdon’s righteousness serves to intensify Huntingdon’s dissipation.


Publishing year




Document type

Student publication for Master's degree (one year)


  • Languages and Literatures


  • Heathcliff
  • nineteenth century
  • manhood
  • Brontë
  • Wuthering Heights
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
  • manliness
  • masculinity
  • Arthur Huntingdon


  • Cecilia Wadsö-Lecaros (PhD)