To fully understand the racism that existed in this time period, there needs to be an explanation of the historic events that had passed before the novel’s time period. According to an article concerning the emancipation of Jamaica in the 1800s on jamica-guide.info, England attempted to abolish slavery but was met with fierce objections by the government in Jamaica. Jamaican parliament believed that the slaves were happy and did not crave change which led to an immense conflict which resulted in numerous revolts, one by Sharpe and one by the Creole population led by 21-year old Jordan. There was an immense racism towards whites and the
Creole population during this time period, with the Jamaicans, Creoles and Jamaican whites wanting different things, freedom, rights and their power back, respectively.
After the emancipation, Rhys starts with Anto...
... middle of paper ...
... and how certain situations and the events that took place didn’t happen on whim but was a cause due to circumstances such as Antoinette poisoning Rochester and Rochester distancing himself from Antoinette after hearing about her mother. The addition of racism helps the readers hold onto a factual bit of the story, something that isn’t fiction to help them connect through pity. More importantly is the underlying message life has no clear outcome and is sometimes, at best, hazy.
Rhys usage of both racism and her window to both Rochester and Antoinette helps the story intertwine with both characters so their faults and actions are driven by each other. Doing so, her readers cannot put blame on the characters and more importantly, life is not always so clear and that certain actions/thoughts cannot be attributed to one person and there’s always a grey area.
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