It is and anaylsis of Charlotte Bronte Jane eyre and Jean Rhys Wide Sargasso Sea

Essay by smokewithmepleaseUniversity, Master'sA+, January 2004

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1.Discuss three ways in which Wide Sargasso Sea is a rewriting of Jane Eyre? What do you think is Jean Rhys reasons for re-writing Jane Eyre? (Quoting from the author's letters where she discusses this issue will earn you extra points).

Wide Sargasso Sea written by Jean Rhys shows a similarity of Jane Eyre written by Charlotte Brontë. There are a lot parallelisms in the Wide Sargasso Sea that shows that Jane Eyre was a direct source for its writing. The reason behind Rhys rewriting was to show the intimate voice of the madwoman that was in Jane Eyre, Mr. Rochester's first wife.

Rhys explains in the letters to her friends the many ways in which she had tried to make it parallel to Brontë Jane Eyre. Rhys believed that the "madwoman" needed a voice. She believed that it was important for her to speak and make people understand how she became a "madwoman".

"She's necessary to the plot ...she must be on stage. She must be plausible with a past, the reason why Mr. Rochester treats her so abominable and feels justified, the reason why he thinks she is mad and why of course she goes mad, even the reason why she tries to set everything on fire, and eventually succeeds"(Rhys 136). She writes to Francis Wyndham explaining the process in which she needs to take to make the book speak the truth about the Madwoman. Rhys makes a direct notation in one letter stating "This is to tell you something about the novel I am trying to write provisional title "The First Mrs. Rochester". I mean, of course, the madwoman in "Jane Eyre"' (Rhys 135). She battles for the title stating, "'The First Mrs. Rochester' is not right. Nor of course is 'Creole'" (136). Rhys explains the...