What the Brontës Made
Even those who think they know all there is to know about the Brontë family will likely be surprised by many of the documents and artifacts included in “Charlotte Brontë: An Independent Will,” currently on view at New York’s Morgan Library.
Curated by Christine Nelson, the exhibition reinforces our notions of Charlotte Brontë’s daring, ambition, and courage, and of the tragic circumstances over which she prevailed. In one letter, Charlotte describes the 1848 visit to London during which she and her sisters Emily and Anne revealed to her publishers that the novels they had submitted under male pseudonyms (Currer, Acton and Ellis Bell) had in fact been written by women (“Mystery is irksome, and I was glad to shake it off”). The publisher was initially surprised, but nevertheless decided to show the sisters around London, introducing them not as authors but as his “country cousins” the Misses Brown. Read all: nybooks/what-the-brontes-made