The narrator of “The Other Daughter” by Joanne C. Hillhouse is an unnamed woman. We only learn that, as a child, other children would tease her and call her “Bubby Island” (l. 3).
A native of Antigua and Barbuda’s capital of St. John’s (l.1), the narrator is the illegitimate daughter (ll. 110-112) of a prostitute named Ruth (l. 14) and of the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda (l. 1). As a child, the narrator lived with her mother in a rooming house in a neighbourhood inhabited mostly by immigrants (ll. 6-7). After her visit to the Prime Minister’s office, the narrator starts attending Crescent Academy (ll. 85-86) and, seven years later, leaves for Vermont, in the US, to attend the writing programme at Middlebury College. (l. 18)
The narrator’s outer characterisation is brief and refers to her physical appearance as a child: her hair is braided in corn-rows (ll. 33-34), and she had “overly Vaselined legs” (l. 51). The corn-rowed hair, for example, could indicate that the narrator is of African descent, as this is a hairstyle typically worn by people of African ethnicity.
The narrator’s inner characterisation is constructed through her language, her thoughts, and her actions.The sto...