join us on facebook
Search our site
The Sapphire Widow by Dinah Jefferies Read the opening extract of the brand new Dinah Jefferies book before its publication on 05/04/2018

Jane Eyre by Rego


Jane Eyre by Rego

Paula Rego has long had a fascination with Charlotte Bront's Jane Eyre and Jean Rhys' The Wide Sargasso Sea . In 2002 this culminated in the production of twenty-five lithographs, reproduced here in a large-format artist's book, along with excerpts from the novel. Marina Warner, in her eloquent and perceptive introduction, examines why Jane Eyre should have inspired Rego's new work. Charlotte Bront and Paula Rego share an imaginative ardour that abolishes the veil between what takes place in fact or in fantasy. As storytellers, they really are kith and kin: Rego reproduces the psychological drama in the book through subjective distortions of scale, cruel expressiveness of gesture and frown, and disturbingly stark contrasts of light and welling shadows.Again and again in the story, Jane Eyre is closeted in a small, confined space, sometimes most terribly against her will, sometimes secluded of her own accord: in an early piece of powerful scene-setting, she is locked in the dark chamber where John Reed died and is so terrified by the dead man's presence that she has a fit. This is only the first of a sequence of experiences when, for better or worse, imagination takes over Jane's being. Such an emphasis on the fire in the mind and the dark outside might perhaps reveal, without saying much more, how Paula Rego of all artists would respond to Jane Eyre .Paula Rego has been making images out of made-up stories since she herself was a child, and if anything can be said to offer a consistent thread through her astonishing, fertile and multi-faceted production it is this: she has been a narrative artist all along, and one whose stories are not reproduced from life as observed or remembered, but from goings-on in the camera lucida of the mind's eye. Rego has not lost in adulthood the energy of the child's make-believe world: 'It all comes out of my head,' she says, 'All little girls improvise, and it's not just illustration: I make it my own.'

About the Author

Paula Rego is the best-known and best-loved woman artist in Britain today. Her most recent retrospectives have been at the Tate Britain and the Museu Serralves in her native Portugal. A retrospective of Rego's prints from her major artists' books from Enitharmon, Pendle Witches, The Children's Crusade and Jane Eyre will form the Edinburgh Festival Exhibition 2005.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

20th July 2004



More books by Rego
Author 'Like for Like'


Enitharmon Press


62 pages


Classic fiction (pre c 1945)



My horizons have been broadened by some of the books I have been lucky to review and I expect it to be no different in the future.

Daran Bellingham

Lovereading has given me the opportunity to delve into new and exciting worlds of authors who I would never have tried before.

Glynis Elliott

Lovereading does a stella job in promoting both new and established authors.

Iris Clements

I love Lovereading for the wonderful like for like author recommendations and for highlighting new books, it's a great resource for readers!


Why I love @lovereadinguk? It's in the name - as dedicated lovers of reading, they are perfect matchmakers for helping me find my next read!

Catherine Jenkins

I 'Lovereading' because it lets me see what new books are around with a detailed synopsis and readers' reviews.

Judith Sharp

They are bright, breezy and eager to offer a great book, then genuinely listen/respect the review one writes.

Maggie Crane

Lovereading always comes up with great suggestions and has introduced me to enjoyable books and new authors to discover.

Gaynor Passmore