Caribbean Poetics: Toward an Aesthetic of West Indian Literature

Caribbean Poetics: Toward an Aesthetic of West Indian Literature

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Silvio Torres-Saillant
Cambridge University Press, 13/11/1997
EAN 9780521551250, ISBN10: 0521551250

Hardcover, 367 pages, 23.6 x 16 x 2.5 cm

Caribbean Poetics studies the literatures written in European languages in the West Indies as a regionally unified corpus with its own identity. Torres-Saillant examines recurring thematic motifs and formal devices that Caribbean literary artists have drawn from in the last six decades, isolating their engagement with language, religion, and history as primary components of their cultural discourse. Arguing that West Indian literary texts contain clues to their own explication, the study substantiates the aesthetic autonomy of the region’s literary tradition by means of individualized readings of the works of three of its principal figures from three different linguistic blocs: Pedro Mir from the Dominican Republic, Kamau Brathwaite from Barbados, and René Depestre from Haiti. The book places Caribbean literature in the larger context of comparative poetics by discussing the historical, political, and cultural forces that mediate its interaction with other literary systems.

"These characteristics of Caribbean literature are admirable captured, explained, and defended by Torres-Saillant in his Caribbean Poetics, a comprehensively researched, skillfully organized, and persuasively and elegantly written book. This carefully written and excellent book makes a strong contribution to understanding West Indian literature." Secci^D'on Bibliogr^D'afica