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Essays comparing jane eyre wide sargasso sea

Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys is usually thought of as a postmodern and postcolonial response to Jane Eyre, as I mentioned, at first sight, but as we forstep in the plot it challenges us into a fascinating discovery of an exotic land, an exotic culture, sexuality, passion, the most controversial feelings of the human existence: My analysis tries to find the links between the two novels, connecting the Mr.

Rochester described in Wide Sargasso Sea and the one found in Jane Eyre, the picture of the passionate woman in Jamaica and the mad one in England, and ultimately the intention of the writer, which is merely given by herself: As a white girl in a predominantly black community, Rhys felt socially and intellectually isolated; in 1907 she left the island essays comparing jane eyre wide sargasso sea went to school to England, returning only once, in 1936.

It is often said that her female protagonists are self-portraits, they present the same woman with different names and minor details at different stages of life, all drifting, unhappy, unstable, but with clear self-knowledge and understanding of others2. In fact, Rhys had a great deal in common with the character of Antoinette Cosway, and her personal experiences likely shaped the events depicted in her fiction. Do you consider yourself an English writer?

I'm not, I'm not! I'm not even English. The Title The choice of the title foreshadows the special character of this novel. Furthermore, Sargasso Sea is in the neighbourhood of the Bermuda triangle, and it had been considered dangerous because of the sea-wed that was believed to entangle the ships.

In spite of these suppositions, the real danger consists in the calmness of the sea, as its waters are so still, that ships before modern motorized ones might have stayed there a great deal of time. The Novel The novel is situated in time shortly after the 1833 emancipation of the slaves in British- owned Jamaica. Antoinette relates the story of her life from childhood to her arranged marriage to an unnamed Englishman. At the end, this Englishman renames Antoinette Bertha after her mentally instable mother, confines her to a locked room until she descends into madness.

The novel is split into three parts. The second part is told form the alternating point of view of the newly-weds during their 'honeymoon' excursion to Granbois, Dominica.

Jean Rhys and Charlotte Bronte

This part offers a rich emotional background, it first spoils the reader with the blossoming of love between the spouses, strong sexual scenes are hidden in delicate words, dialogues, apparently innocent conversations. Afterwards it thrills the reader with the machinations of Daniel, who claims himself to be Antoinette's illegitimate brother.

The seaweed is pushed into the sea by the strong ocean currents that surround the area. Rochester writes to his father: The thirty thousand pounds have been paid to me without question or condition.

  • Further more, there is the magic, the woodoo strongly related to the uncivilised land and people in contrast with the nons in the convent, who represent civilised religion;
  • Rhys was born to Scottish and Welsh parents on the island of Dominica; she spent years roving around France drinking and carrying on with men as a chorus girl and mistress and nude model; she hated England;
  • Later Rochester describes the night the couple spent in Massacre, emphasising that he lay awake all night listening to cocks crowing; a symbol of deception;
  • He put me off his knee, rose, and reverently lifting his hat from his brow, and bending his sightless eyes to the earth, he stood in mute devotion;
  • New York University Press, 1994;
  • That night, however, the old horse chestnut tree is struck by lightning and splits in half, foretelling the difficulties that lie ahead for the couple.

No provisions made for her. And he does say so, by renaming her after her mad mother, by taking her out of her natural habitat and moving her to England, more, by confining her and leaving her alone.

However, she had one chance to escape, back home in the West Indies, if she had left Rochester she could have run away with Sandi Cosway. Sandi appears in the posture of a saviour, saves Antoinette from some harassing children, he also teaches her to throw a rock, he is coloured, kind of accepted by society…and obviously he is the love of her life. The shortest part of the novel, Part Three presents the events again from the perspective of Antoinette, now known as Bertha.

She is confined in 'the attic' of Thornfield Hall, the Rochester mansion she calls the "Great House". The focus is on her relationship with Grace, the servant who is tasked with guarding her and on the one with the Englishman who hides her from the world, who apparently promises to visit her more.

Themes The basic line of the novel is impregnated by the element of alterity, everything is seen in the light of otherness. Further more, there is the magic, the woodoo strongly related to the uncivilised land and people in contrast with the nons in the convent, who represent civilised religion.

So between you and I often wonder who I am and where is my country and where do I belong and why was I ever born at all. An other line essays comparing jane eyre wide sargasso sea themes is male supremacy, the patriarchal structure of society, as Bertha Mason sees her only chance for survival on the side of a wealthy man, once married, Antionette does not have the right of disposal of her money, of her will to not leave the island.

She was much blacker — blue-black with a thin face and straight features.

  1. Rochester wants a true English Rose 'this is what I wished to have' laying a hand on Jane's shoulder. Yet he feels that he is the one that has been deceived and lied to about Antoinette's bad blood.
  2. However, while Jane is able to define herself by rejecting the labels others place on her and form a very sturdy and distinguished identity, Antoinette is baffled by having a body, a life, a spirit. Wide Sargasso Sea is unique from Jane Eyre and Mansfield Park in that the issue of race plays a huge part in how the characters themselves relate to themselves and their place within their society.
  3. In 'Women and Change in the Caribbean', Momsen wrote that when slavery was abolished in the nineteenth century, 'Women were taught that marriage was both prestigious and morally superior'. However, she had one chance to escape, back home in the West Indies, if she had left Rochester she could have run away with Sandi Cosway.
  4. By straining to satisfy St.

She wore a black dress…and yellow handkerchief…No other negro woman wore black, or tied her handkerchief Martinique fashion. Jane is the embodied chastity, a book of rules and laws, through which even love could not get.

Antoinette with her personality, her land and the strength of her emotions is luscious, uncontrollable, wild. Jane is a grown-up even as a child, she takes responsibility for her actions, but Antoinette acts like a child throughout the entire novel: Rochester in Jane Eyre is a loving, caring, mild, wonderful man who has a dark secret, related to another stage of existence of his. The hypertext and the hypotext It is very interesting, that the timeline of the hypertext is located before the hypotext, not after it, like it would appear in the case of classic transtextuality.

Jean Rhys, on the other hand, published her Wide Sargasso Sea in 1966, more than 100 years later, a novel which deals with the marriage of Mr. Intertextuality is given by the author here, since nowhere in the novel appears the name of Rochester, we know him as a second-born son of a rich Englishman, who loses his rights to heritage in favour of his brother, the firstborn son therefore he needs to assure his future by marriage.

His friend Richard arranges the marriage with Antoinette, his half-sister, and the same Richard is the one who visits Rochester in Jane Eyre. The name of Grace Poole in another strong link between the two novels.

Grace Poole is a middle- aged, red-haired servant at Thornfield Hall, who in secret is the nurse, maid and prison guard of Bertha Mason.

Charlotte Brontë May Have Started the Fire, But Jean Rhys Burned Down the House

Jane thinks Grace responsible for the strange sounds, the eerie laugh on the third floor and for the attempt of burning Mr. Grace, however offers the solution for Mr. She finds out that something happened in Jamaica, because her master came home with grey in his hair and misery in his eyes.

Conclusion Wide Sargasso Sea is a complex and challenging literary experience. It is so rich in exotic culture and in feelings and yet it is so poor in possibilities at the disposal of the characters.

Comparing Wide Sargasso Sea And Jane Eyre

Everything in the novel is connected: The principle of literary theory, according to which the reader has to identify him- or herself with one of the characters gains a great importance here: Unfortunately, Antoinette affective falls victim to a series of circumstances that determine her faith and sinks her into misery, madness and death. Postmodern literature has this strange effect on readers: Bibliography, weborgaphy Jean Rhys. Norton and Company Ltd.

An Outline of English Literature. Introduction to Literature, Criticism and Theory. Pearson Education Limited; J.