Post-Colonial Perspective of Identity in Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea


  • Lufti Abbas Lufti



colonialism, identity, otherness, post-colonial, Rhys


Post-colonial theory attempts to recall lost histories and people’s experiences under colonial hegemonic rule. It covers up political, literary and cultural concepts such as racism, slavery, identity crises, hybridity, emancipation, and gender complexities. Relationally, the concepts of identity and otherness have been extensively debated by different scholars (e.g. Edward Said, Gayatri Spivak and Homi K. Bhabha). In particular, this paper tends to pinpoint how the two concepts are viewed in Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea. Rhys intensively invites her readers to a journey of identity crises through her heroine, Antoinette, who grows between two different worlds and cultures, which leads to an increase in her life struggles.


Ashcroft, B., G. Griffiths and H. Tiffin. 1989. The Empire Writes Back: Theory and Practice in Post-colonial Literatures. London: Routledge.

Ashcroft, B., G. Griffiths and H. Tiffin. 1995. The Post-colonial Studies Reader. London: Routledge.

Barry, P. 1995. Beginning Theory: An Introduction to Literary and Cultural Theory. Manchester and New York: Manchester UP.

Bhabha, H. K. 1994. The Location of Culture. London: Routledge.

Balfour, M. 2013. Refugee Performance. Practical Encounters. Bristol and Chicago: Intellect.

Burrows, V. 2004. Whiteness and Trauma: The Mother-Daughter Knot in the fiction of Jean Rhys, Jamaica Kincaid and Toni Morrison. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Fanon, F. 1963. The Wretched of the Earth (trans. C. Farrington). New York: Grove Press.

Kendrick, R. 1994. Edward Rochester and the Margins of Masculinity in ‘Jane Eyre’ and ‘Wide Sargasso Sea.’ Scinapse, June 22. [Internet]. Available at: [15. 9. 2019].

Loomba, A. 1998. Colonialism/Postcolonialism. London: Routledge.

Rhys J. 1968. Wide Sargasso Sea. London: Penguin.

Robins, K. 2006. Identity. In T. Bennett, L. Grossberg and M. Morris (eds.) New Keywords: A Revised Vocabulary of Culture and Society. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 172–175.

Said, E. 1978. Orientalism. London: Routledge.

Said, E. 1993. Culture and Imperialism. London: Chatto and Windus.

Shapiro, A. 1968. In Defense of Jane Eyre. Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900, 681–698.

Tiffin, H. 1987. Post-Colonial Literatures and Counter-Discourse. Kunapipi 9(3), 17–34.




How to Cite

Lufti, L. A. . (2021). Post-Colonial Perspective of Identity in Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea. Philologia, 18(1), 77–86.



Nauka o književnosti/Literary Studies