By Abigail Ward
Slavery is a routine topic in works by means of the modern black writers in Britain Caryl Phillips, David Dabydeen and Fred D'Aguiar, but their go back to this prior arises from an pressing have to comprehend the racial anxieties of 20th- and twenty-first-century Britain. Now to be had in paperback, this e-book examines the ways that their literary explorations of slavery may well make clear present matters in Britain this day, or what can be regarded as the ongoing legacies of the UK's mostly forgotten slave past.
In this hugely unique examine of latest postcolonial literature, Ward explores quite a number novels, poetry and non-fictional works on the way to examine their artistic responses to the slave previous. this is often the 1st research to concentration completely on British literary representations of slavery, and thoughtfully engages with such notions because the ethics of exploring slavery, the reminiscence and trauma of this previous, and the issues of taking a simply old method of Britain's involvement in slavery or Indian indenture. even supposing all 3 authors are interested by the matter of the way to begin representing slavery, their methods to this challenge fluctuate immensely, and this ebook investigates those alterations.
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Additional resources for Caryl Phillips, David Dabydeen and Fred D'Aguiar: Representations of slavery
Indian indentured labour was seen by many as a continuation of slavery under a different guise. Mortality rates were high for those indentured labourers who had survived the journey to the Caribbean and, whenever able, immigrants fled the harsh life on the estates. Although slavery had officially ended, Indian indentured labour can be viewed as its immediate legacy, and a continuation of enslavement. 45 If Britain’s involvement in the slave trade has not been afforded the due amount of historical representation, the role played by Indian indentured labourers is especially overlooked.
Instead, he exhibits a deliberate vandalisation of, and irreverence towards, received history; as a result, his is a much more confrontational and deliberately provocative approach to writing about this past. Dabydeen’s primary concern is with the ethics of representing slavery. His works reveal his anxieties about audience and received readers for his texts, drawing comparisons between the eighteenth-century slave narrator’s reliance on the abolition market and twentieth-century readers’ desire to ‘consume’ books on slavery.
5 Edwards’s criticisms arise from Phillips’s heavy reliance on his sources, apparently believing that the latter’s use of these disparate accounts was unoriginal. Edwards fails to see that Phillips’s act of creating the ‘patchwork’ of sources is vital. In exposing the mechanics of construction, Phillips reveals the inadequacy of relying upon one source, or standard account (such as that of received history) to narrate the past of slavery. indd 27 12/01/2011 10:31 28â•… Phillips, Dabydeen, D’Aguiar at the heart of attempts to represent slavery are exposed.
Caryl Phillips, David Dabydeen and Fred D'Aguiar: Representations of slavery by Abigail Ward