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Wide Sargasso Sea

Wide Sargasso Sea

by Jean Rhys

Contrasting Regions Quotes Page 4

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Quote #10

That afternoon we went to England. There was grass and olive-green water and tall trees looking into the water. This, I thought, is England. If I could be here I'd get well again and the sound in my head would stop. (III.4.25)

What's interesting about this passage is that England isn't a thoroughly horrible place, but actually has some redeeming features. The nature Antoinette describes invokes a typical English pastoral scene, a literary mode that celebrates England's natural beauty as representative of everything that's great about being English. For a novel that's a pretty obvious critique of British imperialism, it's interesting to think of what it finds redeeming about English culture. After all, it does adapt one of the greatest novels in the English literary tradition.

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