By A. James Arnold
This historical past of literature within the Carribean makes a speciality of English- and Dutch-speaking areas. themes coated contain: the anglophone Caribbean; literary improvement - a contrastive historical past; style - a contrastive heritage; The Netherlands, Antilles, Aruba, and Suriname; a mosaic surroundings - a contrastive heritage of style; literary feedback; drama; fiction; and poetry.
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Extra resources for A History of Literature in the Caribbean: English and Dutch Speaking Regions v. 2 (Comparative History of Literature in European Languages)
On the whole, this is a stilted, ill-assorted amalgam. Reid’s sortie into linguistic invention comes from a deliberate shunning of vernacular resources and indicates that he felt more at home with Standard English. Indeed, the apogee of Reid’s style — a technique begun in 1949, developed in his children’s novel Sixty–Five, 1960, and more extensively sustained in Nanny Town, 1983–is a use of Standard English rather in the manner of Chinua Achebe in African literature, harnessing that language both for the narrative voice and for dialogue, but so infusing it with lexical and idiomatic Jamaicanisms, with ideophones and concrete images derived from the Jamaican landscape, folk language, way of life, and mannerism that the impression created is that one is listening to a quintessential Jamaican voice and experience.
By structuring her poetry around the voices of ordinary people, from pastors to street-sellers, and by ﬁltering her often satiric observations through one of these personae, Bennett transforms her poetry from a channel of individual experience to the self-portrayal of a people. Another functional implication of her method is that it imbues her art with a performance dimension, spanning commentary, description, labrish (gossip), abuse, and exclamation. Younger artists consciously operating in the Bennett tradition are eminently Paul Keens-Douglas of Trinidad and Joan Andrea Hutchinson of Jamaica.
This experiment may have stemmed from contradictory impulses: a reservation about employing vernacular in a work of epic dimension, yet a desire to elevate the vernacular from a language of simpletons and buﬀoons to a vehicle of prestige and moment. ” (Reid , 2). ” and “Is Davie it” (88 and 53). ” (88). Another characteristic of this language style is the use of the perfect tense (absent in Creole): “They ha’ locked up Davie too” (53). At times, Reid links this to a Scots-type negation: “he has no seen me” (88).
A History of Literature in the Caribbean: English and Dutch Speaking Regions v. 2 (Comparative History of Literature in European Languages) by A. James Arnold