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The love of money is the root of all evil. Discuss in detail the importance of money in "The Wide Sargasso Sea".

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Introduction

?The love of money is the root of all evil.? Discuss in detail the importance of money in the novel. The presence of money-driven motives is predominant throughout the novel and serve to emphasise the consequences of arguments and relationships involving money. The power of money is destructive and consequences of the destruction manifest themselves in the conflicts between people in Wide Sargasso Sea. Money can be a cause for jealousy and resentment that manifest its consequences in drastic actions that may be potentially devastating. Annette warns Mr Mason that ?[they] were something to laugh at? when they were poor ?but [they] are not poor now.? The contrast between the Annette?s self-deprecating tone while describing the humiliation they previously suffered when they were poor and her subsequent solemn tone while emphasizing their affluence imply that people will now resent them for their wealth instead of mocking them for their poverty. ...read more.

Middle

The inability to come to terms with the disastrous consequences of her financially-motivated marriage causes her decline into madness and thus, it can be said that the love of money manifests its malignance when it eventually results in the destruction of relationships and in this case, kinship. Also, financially-motivated people in the novel serve to start a chain of unfortunate events that eventually contributed to the mental decline of the protagonists, Antoinette and Rochester. Daniel Cosway?s act of blackmailing Rochester with the scandalous history of his wife and her family causes ?disgust [to rise] in him like sickness?. This implies Rochester?s rising conviction in his cultural prejudice against non-whites. It is this misleading conviction, substantiated by the greed Rochester finds in the financially-motivated creole Daniel Cosway, that acts like a ?sickness? within Rochester and drives him towards moral decline as he imprisons Antoinette without any compassion. Rochester?s marriage to Antoinette is one of similar financial motivation due to primogeniture that marginalises him substantially. ...read more.

Conclusion

Despite Grace?s greed, she is not unsympathetic towards Antoinette and does not ?turn [her] back on [Antoinette]?. Even more significantly, she states clearly that she does not ?serve the devil for no money?; her diction describing Rochester connotes her disdain towards Rochester and hence, imply her support for Antoinette even though Antoinette appears to be a disgraceful secret of the household. This shows that Grace?s morality is not impaired by her potential source of income. The simultaneous presence of greed and the absence of malice demonstrate that money and evil can also be exclusive of one another. The recurrence of money in the form of ulterior motives that characters in the novel possess serves to emphasise the destruction and ill-feelings money can bring about. Nevertheless, the greed it rouses in humans may be catalysed by larger forces like the law and inherent prejudice. However, money is after all an unbiased and non-living entity on its own; its power and consequences of the usage is solely dependent on the wielder?s intentions and strength of their morality. ...read more.

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