chapter
“Not at home”: the in-betweenity of the white creole woman writer
Pages 11

She never blinks at all it seems to me. Long, sad, dark alien eyes. Creole of pure English descent she may be, but they are not English or European either.

(Rhys 1968: 56)

Another dimension of the multiple signification of “home” and “homemaking” within the context of the colonial space, concerns the ambivalent selfidentification of the white creole woman. Rhys’s Antoinette has become representative of this group, a “white cockroach” to the blacks and a “white nigger” to the English, wondering “who I am and where is my country and where do I belong and why was I ever born at all” (Rhys 1968: 85).The ambivalence of the white creole woman is figured as a kind of double consciousness, a division of loyalties and affiliations: to places, to people, to cultural practices. The protagonists in the novels of Bliss, Allfrey and Rhys are only at home in their tropical world during childhood; all too soon, that sense of belonging is eroded and alienation ensues.10