Jean Rhys: the Writings of a Woman Touched by the British Empire

Francisco Javier Gil Jacinto


The starting point of this essay is the assumption that The British Empire, while it lasted, but also after its’ collapse, produced literature extolling its virtues and faults, which influenced some English authors in favour of or against colonialism. Along with these authors it is necessary to consider those born in the British colonies. Some of whom, without dealing with the subject head on showed in their work the less amiable face of The Empire, and the consequences that this had on the lives of its citizens. A representative case is the Dominican writer Jean Rhys. Although her novels and short stories resist labels of race and gender, it is worth considering to what extent her colonial upbringing marked her life as a creole and a woman. To illustrate this impact, we look at one of her novels and analyse in detail her last collection of short stories



Jean Rhys; British Empire; Creole; colonialism; West Indies; gender


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© Universidad de La Rioja, 2013

ISSN 1576-6357

EISSN 1695-4300