Jean Rhys (1890-1979), a white Creole, left the West Indies for Great Britain and also lived for some time in continental Europe. She published four modernist novels in the 1920s and 30s, but the book that really made her famous was Wide Sargasso Sea (1966), a rewriting of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre in which Rhys attempts to correct the Eurocentric bias of the English author. The story has Mr Rochester’s first wife, Bertha Mason, as main character. This mad Caribbean white Creole, locked in the attic at Thornfield, moves centre stage in Rhys’s novel and offers her vision of why her marriage with Rochester went wrong. Stylistically, the novel advances some postmodern concerns like the rewriting of canonical texts, multiperspectivism and fragmentation.


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