Essay on Racial Tensions in Wide Sargasso Sea

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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. Many racial situations occur between whites and blacks, which Americans are use to due to the dangerous troubles between blacks and whites in the 1950s with a clear enemy: the whites. But Rhys tackles a more important point: an overall racial hostility between everybody living in Jamaica during the novels time period with no one to blame. Instead of using only racism, Rhys uses situations her readers could easily relate to such as: betrayal, adultery, and feeling of not belonging. Through her use of alternating points of views, …show more content…

Rhys places Antoinette in such a position to show her readers several things: how Antoinette faced racism and prejudice, her misunderstanding of racism, and the violence towards the discriminated. Rhys also shows how apparent the racism towards white people is, with Annette hinting at the destructive nature of the Jamaican people by saying “they are more alive than [Mr. Mason is], lazy or not, and they can be dangerous and cruel for reason you wouldn’t understand” (29). Rhys needs to show that races, Creole and white people cannot escape racism and chooses to use Rochester and Antoinette to help readers better connect with them. The point of this practice is to show Rochester and Antoinette are both victim and helps create a complex connection between them: through conflict, marriage and their individual faults.
Rhys integrates the two characters and their racism so her readers will feel more connected with both. In the paper “Race, Creole, and National Identities in Rhys’ Wide Sargasso

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