THE OTHER MOTHER IN JAMAICA KINCAID’S AT THE BOTTOM OF THE RIVER AND BESSIE HEAD’S MARU.
Mothers are women who inhabit or perform the role of bearing some relation to their children, who may or may not be their biological offspring. Those who give birth to children because they produce their ovum for fertilization and development are designated “Birth or Biological” mothers not minding whether such mothers after birth will continue the caring and parenting of such babies. If a biological mother fails in the caring and parenting of a baby, another person can take care of the parenting. This caretaker falls under the second category of mother and is described as “the Other mother.” Jamaica Kincaid’s At the Bottom of the River and Bessie Head’s Maru are two post-colonial novels that have received critical attention by various critics from different perspectives, yet there remains a void to be filled. That void is “the Other Mother.” “The Other mother” is an important aspect of mothering which deserves analysis and this study intends to fulfills it. Using Post-Colonial Literary theory, the study is aimed at examining how “the Other mother” is treated in these texts and how “the Other mother” helps and influences the life of the protagonists to regain confidence and self consciousness. It exposes the growth of a child from infant/ innocence to maturity. The work discovers that the Other mother influences the child positively and assists her in realizing her humanity. Noteworthy is that more than a mother can own a child and a child can claim up to three mothers. Finally, it posits that in child rearing, the social responsibility is very important and decides the future of a child.