Jean Rhys once said that throught her childhood she had been fascinated with the mad woman of Jane Eyre and she always wanted to give her a narrative, which she accomplished in her last novel qtd in. The novel begins in in Coulibri, the slaves have been granted emancipation.
In Wide Sargasso Sea, different characters experience different types of isolation and alienation but Antoinette, the main character of this book, is the one who is isolated and alienated by the most due to her identity of being a Creole.
She is marginalized by both the black majority and white minority on the island, and she is further destroyed when she is isolated and alienated by her husband, Rochester.
Jean Rhys reveals that madness of Antoinette is not innate, but rather is a consequence of the isolation and oppression. As Antoinette is neither a black nor a pure white, she and her family are not accepted by any group in the society. Antoinette is alienated by both the whites and the blacks thus she is considered as a double outsider.
Such isolation causes her to have ambivalent cultural and racial identity and this can be seen in the diction and tone used by Jean Rhys. Furthermore, her tone in this quote shows desperation which suggests her absence of acceptance to the society thus her desire to belong somewhere.
This suggests that Antoinette is always in an ambivalent region of identity which does not belong anywhere because of the alienation and isolation she experiences from the society.
But we were not in their ranks. They called us white cockroaches.
Let sleeping dogs lie. As Antoinette has an ambivalent cultural and racial identity caused by the isolation from the society, she desperately seeks for love from Rochester to get healed when she gets married.
Not calling her by real name shows how Rochester alienates her true identity and his desire of her being someone else.
Towards the end of the book, we can see the changes in her state of mind and that she finally realizes that her marriage only ruined herself and it did not affirm her identity as she states: Questioning the facts which normal people would know shows the confusion in her inner self and that she is becoming a mad woman, killing herself by firing her place.
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The portrayal of Antoinette in "Wide Sargasso Sea" and Bertha Mason in "Jane Eyre" as a Liminal Persona - Inbisat Shuja - Essay - English - Literature, Works - Publish your bachelor's or master's thesis, dissertation, term paper or essayPages: 5.
Racial Tensions in Wide Sargasso Sea Essay examples - Racial tension is a major theme in “Wide Sargasso Sea”, with the mix of whites and blacks and white/blacks in the novel creating a cut-throat atmosphere which creates a hazardous place for Jamaica’s denizens.
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The Struggles of the Heroines in Wide Sargasso Sea and Jane Eyre I Am Who (You Say) I Am: Issues of Identity in Kincaid's Lucy and Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea The Impossibility of Standing Alone: Jean Rhys's "Wide Sargasso Sea" in the Context of Bronte's "Jane Eyre".
Essay on Racial Tensions in Wide Sargasso Sea Words | 5 Pages Racial tension is a major theme in “Wide Sargasso Sea”, with the mix of whites and blacks and white/blacks in the novel creating a cut-throat atmosphere which creates a hazardous place for Jamaica’s denizens.