French Guiana

Memory Traces of the Penal Colony
by Patrick Chamoiseau (Author), Matt Reeck (Translator)
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Hailed by Milan Kundera as "an heir of Joyce and Kafka," Prix Goncourt winner Patrick Chamoiseau is among the leading francophone writers today. With most of his novels having appeared in English, this book opens a new window on his oeuvre. A moving poetic essay that bears witness to the forgotten history of the French penal colony in French Guiana, French Guiana—Memory Traces of the Penal Colony (Guyane—Traces-Mémoires du bagne) is accompanied by more than sixty evocative color photographs by Rodolphe Hammadi and translated, here for the first time, deftly by Matt Reeck.

In the tradition of his late Martinique compatriot Édouard Glissant, Chamoiseau theorizes a means for recovering indigenous history against Western, colonial overwriting through history with a capital "h." His prose poetry combines fragments of history with his diarylike notes of a visit to the penal colony's ruins. He uses the phrase "traces-mémoires" (memory traces) to conceptualize how land, ruins, and discarded bits of history return to the surface of time and attention. In doing so, with his prose framed by the eloquent layer of Hammadi's images, he not only suggests rich ways of conceptualizing Caribbean memory but also provides tools applicable to other contexts where aesthetic and ethical approaches to oppressive colonial pasts arise.

A must for readers of the author's novels in translation, French Guiana—Memory Traces of the Penal Colony will also interest scholars and students of Caribbean studies, postcolonial studies, memory and trauma studies, and world literature.

Hailed by Milan Kundera as "an heir of Joyce and Kafka," Prix Goncourt winner Patrick Chamoiseau is among the leading Francophone writers today. With most of his novels having appeared in English, this book opens a new window on his oeuvre. A moving poetic essay that bears witness to the forgotten history of the French penal colony in French Guiana, French Guiana—Memory Traces of the Penal Colony accompanied by more than sixty evocative color photographs by Rodolphe Hammadi and translated, here for the first time, deftly by Matt Reeck.

Format
EPUB
Protection
Watermark
Publication date
February 04, 2020
Publisher
Page count
120
ISBN
9780819579317
Paper ISBN
9780819579300
File size
79 MB

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