Lit/Phil MWF 11-11:50
Antoinette's Downfall In part three of Wide Sargasso Sea we see the downfall of Antoinette the carribean girl and the rise of the deranged Bertha her english alter ego. After a lifetime of solidarity and inwards reflection with no true sources of outside love or interaction Antoinette spirals into madness. This part of the novel chronicles her fateful last days as her inner insanity truly takes hold, causing her to first assault her step-brother and then later leap from the roof of the house amidst one of her delusioned states.
At this point in the novel Antoinette is barely aware of her surroundings. She cannot comprehend that she is actually in England because the house she is locked up inside is so different from her youthful imaginings of what England must be like. She does not know what she looks like anymore because she has not seen a mirror in months and begins to lose both her identity and her sanity.
A key image within this section of the novel is the red dress from the caribbean. This dress is the last ties she has to being Antoinette the young and semi-sane girl from Jamaica. She is convinced that if she could only wear this dress she would no longer have to be Bertha Mason, the name inflicted upon her by her husband.
Throughout Antoinette/Bertha’s entire life she has been enslaved, whether through her isolation, or her role as a female she is forced into constant servitude of some kind or another. She is also enslaved in knowing that everyone expects her to follow in her family's lineage of madness. She knows that almost everyone expects her to go…