Jamaica Kincaid Research Paper

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Jamaica Kincaid is an African American literature writer that has impacted many people with her works. Most of her writing has a parallel connection with her life growing up as a child and dealing with the difficulties of living in a Caribbean culture. In two of Jamaica Kincaid’s works “Girl” and Annie John, she gives insight on the Caribbean culture that’s bestowed on girls and her difficulties in having a stable relationship with her mother. Jamaica Kincaid’s maiden name when born was Elaine Potter Richardson and she was born in 1949 in St. John’s, Antigua (Gilbert). Kincaid had a very close relationship with her mother for the first nine years of her life as an only child until her three brothers were born. Not only did the birth of her…show more content…
That they made literature" (Garner). Soon after that she became a staff writer for the magazine in 1976 and a featured columnist for the highly visible "Talk of the Town" section of the magazine for the next nine years (Garner). In 1978, Kincaid's first piece of fiction was published in the New Yorker, and it later became part of her first book, At the Bottom of the River (1983). The short story collection has a series of lyrical vignettes focusing on the growing consciousness of a young girl in the Caribbean. "Girl," the first and probably most important piece of the collection shows Kincaid different use in language, as she explores themes of enculturation and the "patriarchal politics of oppression" (Gilbert). At The Bottom of the River was nominated for the PEN/Faulkner Award and won the Morton Darwen Zabel Award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters (Kincaid). Two years later Kincaid published her first novel, Annie John in 1985, a story that many critics consider to be an expansion and refinement of the ideas originally presented in At the Bottom of the River (Kincaid). In Annie John,…show more content…
She also this understanding of the meaning of innocence and the value and possibilities of the world that has its imperfections. The growing up of Annie John in the novel involves an “openness and receptivity to all manner of emotions and impulses, creative and destructive love, dawning cruelty, generosity, possessiveness, and instincts of hubris” (Modern American Literature). The child is fully in touch with the complex motions of her own nature and being. It is also the freedom of the child's natural curiosity, the intentness with which it relates to the world around it, animate and inanimate forms alike. According to Garis in “Kincaid's testimony, the mother comes to contain and embody the world because of the totality with which the child lived that first relationship with her; and the struggle to be reconciled with her mother contained in embryo the struggle to be reconciled with life itself” (Garis). This book was another reference to Kincaid’s life while growing up and having a close relationship with her mother and then having that kind of separation she wasn’t able to get back. Kincaid’s novel Annie John was selected as one of three finalists for the 1985 international Ritz Paris Hemingway Award. She is also the recipient of the Anifield-Wolf Book Award and The Lila-Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund

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