As the second, and longest, narrative part of Wide Sargasso Sea nears its close, Rhys includes a scene in which her protagonist’s husband-angered by a feeling of multiple betrayals, suspicious about the causes of his disintegrating marriage and newly determined to leave Jamaica-sketches a picture of an “English house” with a “standing woman” in an attic room. This moment seems clearly of significance to readers of this novel, and seems clearly readable, as well. Knowing, as we do, this novel’s status as a “prequel” of sorts to Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre, we instinctively identify the unnamed woman in the attic as Antoinette Cosway, Rhys’s version of Brontë’s madwoman. The drawing becomes a premonitory echo of the fate of Bertha Rochester-a brilliant moment of intertextuality that both foreshadows the narrative’s future and registers the novel’s, and the character’s, literary past. The identity of the scribbled woman seems so obvious that then the question becomes the significance of the husband’s act-fitting it into a Freudian, psychoanalytic/feminist, or postcolonial reading.2 The beauty and the horror of the Rochester figure’s moment of drunken insight, or planning, or evasionit can be read as each and all of these-is its profound mix of ambiguity and clarity, a moment of communion between Brontë’s and Rhys’s novels that gains its unsettling power from readerly knowledge. We know that Edward Rochester imprisons his “intemperate and unchaste” (Brontë 353) wife in an attic room at Thornfield. We recognize her in this nameless husband’s scribbled drawing of an anonymous and caged woman.