Join this free 60-minute live virtual event hosted by Carlo Gébler, as writer and reviewer Bidisha discusses classic novels Broad Sargasso Sea and Jayne Eyre. Hear actor Evlyne Oyedokun read excerpts from Rhys’ great novel.


Date and time

June 29, 2021 2 p.m. – 3 p.m.


On sale

Join this free 60-minute live virtual event hosted by Carlo Gébler, as writer and reviewer Bidisha discusses classic novels Broad Sargasso Sea and Jayne eyre. Hear actor Evlyne Oyedokun read excerpts from Rhys’ great novel.

During the event, it will be possible to ask questions. Please ask your questions using the Q&A function. The questions will be submitted as text, so your camera and microphone do not need to be turned on.

Early booking is recommended. Saga customers must reserve their seat before Friday June 25 at 9 a.m.

About books

In Charlotte Brontë’s novel Jane eyre (1847) Jane Eyre and Edward Fairfax Rochester’s wedding ceremony is interrupted by lawyer Mr. Briggs declaring an impediment to union: Rochester’s previous marriage to Bertha Antoinette Mason, the “mad woman in the attic”.

Jean Rhys took umbrage with Brontë’s stereotypical portrayal of Antoinette (Bertha’s real name). She was “upset” by the portrait and believed that Antoinette needed her own story, to establish “why Rochester treats her so abominably and feels justified, why he thinks she is crazy and why of course she goes mad, even the reason she tries to set everything on fire, and ultimately succeeds.

Broad Sargasso Sea is both a prequel and a response to Jane eyre, in which Rhys introduces us to Antoinette as a young woman on the island of Dominica and the sexual oppression, racism, and complex social and political history of the West Indies in the early 1800s.

Jean Rhys

Jean Rhys was born Ella Gwendolyn Rees Williams in 1890 on the island of Dominica and moved to England at the age of sixteen. In 1930 After leaving Mr. Mackenzie was published and later novels included Travel in the dark (1934) and Hello midnight (1939). After a long absence from the literary world, Broad Sargasso Sea was published in 1966, after Rhys had spent years writing and perfecting it. It is now considered a modern masterpiece.


Bidisha is a broadcaster, journalist and filmmaker. His latest publication, an essay titled The future of serious art, was released in November 2020 and its film series, Dawn, has just been launched. Bidisha specializes in international human rights, social justice, and the arts and offers political analysis, arts criticism, and cultural diplomacy tying these interests together. She writes for the UK’s major broadsheet newspapers and presents and comments for BBC TV and Radio, ITN, CNN, Viacom, CBS and Sky News. As part of BBC4 The Secret Life of Books strand, she presented a documentary on Jane eyre.

Evlyne Oyedokun

Evlyne Oyedokun graduated from RADA. His theater credits include Rosencrantz and Guildestern are dead at the Old Vic, with Daniel Radcliffe and David Haig, and Chekhov’s The cherry orchard at Nottingham Playhouse. Outside the theater she appeared in the film Schadenfreude, which starred Ian McKellan, and the Radio 4 drama, Fire in the bookstore and in the Radio 5 series The fight of the century.

Evlyne Oyedokun
Evlyne Oyedokun

Carlo Gebler

Carlo Gébler’s most recent publications include Aesop’s Fables: The Cruelty of the Gods (a collaboration with artist Gavin Weston) and Tales we tell ourselves, a selection from the Decameron. His novel, I, Antigone, the biography of Odipe written by his daughter Antigone will appear in August. Carlo Gébler has been a prison teacher since 1991, notably at HMP Maghaberry where he led a theater-based literature course for inmates serving long sentences. He also teaches at Trinity and American College Dublin.

For any questions about Saga Virtual Events, please refer to the Saga Events Program FAQ.

Terms and conditions

1) The event is reserved for Saga customers who have registered to benefit from customer benefits (formerly Possibilities). You must have a MySaga account. Please visit www.saga.co.uk/membership/activate to create an account.

2) This is an exclusive event with limited places. To attend, you must book to reserve your place. To book, click on the ‘Book now’ button and follow the instructions.

3) Reservations for this event will close at 9 a.m. on Friday June 25.

4) The event will last approximately 60 minutes.

5) The event will start at 2 p.m. (BST) on Tuesday, June 29, 2021.

6) This event will be recorded. You are deemed to have accepted and agreed to be bound by these terms and conditions when booking and attending the event. The Promoter reserves the right to use the recorded content for any purpose.

7) The event will be hosted through Zoom. Zoom is accessible via the Internet browser of your choice. You can also download Zoom as an app for your PC and devices by visiting zoom.us/download.

8) A link to the event will be emailed to you approximately 48 hours before the event. You are not authorized to copy or distribute the Zoom link provided. The event will start quickly, so we recommend that you register 5 minutes before the start time. When you join the event, you must make sure to use the same email address that you use for your MySaga account.

9) Your camera and microphone will be turned off when you join the event. The names of the participants will be displayed during the event.

10) The host can reactivate you and allow video during the Q&A section of the event, but only if you agree to do so.

11) It is strictly forbidden to film and photograph during the event.

12) For Zoom terms and conditions, please visit www.zoom.us/terms. Zoom is a third-party streaming platform. The Promoter is not responsible for Zoom Video Communications, Inc. The Promoter accepts no responsibility for technical failure, technical malfunction, computer hardware or software failure, satellite, network or server failure. of any kind during the event.

13) The Promoter reserves the right to modify or withdraw the event for any reason whatsoever and without notice. You will be notified by email (using the information you provided when registering for your MySaga account).

14) The promoter of this event is Saga Membership Limited of Enbrook Park, Sandgate, Folkestone, Kent, CT20 3SE.


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