Blogs in May 2020

Black Shack Alley 13th May 2020

Following in the tradition of Richard Wright’s Black Boy, Joseph Zobel’s semi-autobiographical 1950 novel Black Shack Alley chronicles the coming-of-age of José, a young boy grappling with issues of power and identity in colonial Martinique. As José transitions from...

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Island on Fire 2nd January 2019

In the lush, tropical world of Martinique where slavery is a distant memory and voodoo holds sway, Emilie Dujon is caught between an unfaithful fiance and a life of spinsterhood. When the volcano known as Mount Pelée begins to...

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The Middle Passage 9th February 2014

In 1960, Dr Eric Williams, the first Prime Minister of independent Trinidad, invited V. S. Naipaul to revisit his native country and record his impressions. In this classic of modern travel writing he created a deft and remarkably prescient...

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Becoming Josephine 1st January 1970

Rose Tascher is brought up in Martinique. At 15, she is married off to a Parisian aristocrat, who cannot stand her or her provincial ways. She divorces him, the French Revolution comes and her place, as Josephine, consort to...

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