Creolenss vs negritude

Creolenss vs negritude - Crossing the Mangrove and"Morris...

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Crossing the Mangrove and “Morris, Bhaiya as National Allegories “All third world texts are necessarily…what I will call national allegories…particularly when their forms develop out of essentially Western machineries representation, such as the novel.” The latter is Jameson’s argument that pieces based on the results of Westernization, such as Maryse Conde’s novel Crossing the Mangrove and Clyde Hosien’s short story “Morris, Bhaiya” regarding the nations of Trinidad and Guadeloupe, can be read as national allegories. “Those texts, which are seemingly private… project a political dimension in the form of national allegory: the story of the private individual destiny is always an allegory of the embattled situation of the public Third World culture and society” (Jameson). Both of Conde and Hosein’s work illustrate the consequences that colonization, slavery, and racial oppression have had upon each respective “Third World” country through the depictions of individual’s mundane, everyday way of living, ultimately proposing how individuals can seek change and hope for a better life. The history of Guadeloupe has been full of hardships imposed by European colonization. During the 18 th and 19 th centuries slavery was key to economic and plantation success. When slavery was abolished, social rifts became greater than ever as servants from China and India came to work for plantation owners, and although being paid low wages, this extra cost to the planters caused economic downfall across the nation of Guadeloupe. Maryse Conde’s novel Crossing the Mangrove can be read as a national allegory of Guadeloupe’s past, present and future. It brings together the elements of diversity, social class, and the quest for one collective identity as a Guadeloupe nation in order to attain enrich their lives by not dwelling upon their unfortunate past. The novel’s protagonist Sancher is symbolic of the pains the Western world caused Guadeloupe’s people in the past. His ancestors were plantation owners and executioners of slave
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massacres. Although he comes to Riviere de Sel to atone for his ancestor’s crimes, he must die ending the curse once and for all. His death serves as a cathartic catalyst, sparking change and re-birth for the people of Guadeloupe. His death brings together the many cultures and biological backgrounds that history has thrown. Their individual history and perceptives attempt to understand the enigma that Sancher represents, opening their mind to an outside world and freeing them of their mental state as prisoners. Vilma’s mother, Rosa states, “Now Francis Sancher is dead… The rest of us are alive and continue to live as we’ve always done…We shall
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This essay was uploaded on 04/19/2008 for the course COMM 89 taught by Professor Jansma during the Winter '08 term at UCSB.

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Creolenss vs negritude - Crossing the Mangrove and"Morris...

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