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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

AFRO 8910: Caribbean Women Writers

AFRICAN AMERICAN & AFRICAN STUDIES is offering AFRO 8910: Caribbean Women Writers this spring 2016. The course will be taught by Njeri Githire on Tuesdays from 2:30 – 5:00pm. Click here for a course description.

AFRO 8910: Caribbean Women Writers:
Spring 2016

With the award of the Man Booker prize to Jamaican-born Marlon James in October 2015, Caribbean literature has seen a popularity surge around the world. Indeed, James stands on the shoulders of literary greats, who have consistently dramatized the Caribbean experience in prose, poetry, drama, dance, song, and other artistic media. While the best known of them may be men (V. S. Naipaul, Trinidad, Man Booker in 1971; Nobel Prize in literature in 2001, and Derek Walcott, Saint Lucia, Nobel Prize in literature in 1992, among them), Caribbean women writers have undertaken to reimagine the region's history, inscribing their diverse perspectives on the literary landscape, and subverting the existing male discourses to re-order existing literary forms. Using different genres (novel, poetry, film, short stories, etc.,) this course seeks to understand how select Caribbean women writers attempt to foster a sense of awareness of, and belonging to, the Caribbean region.  How do these writers negotiate the burden of colonial legacy, the region’s history of slavery and its attendant stigmas, the fragmentation of Caribbean identity, as well as migration, exile, transnational and Diasporic realities in a complex, ever-changing and politicized world?

Course Objectives:
* Introduce students to the rich range of literary production from English, Spanish, French and Dutch-speaking Caribbean societies;
* Examine how gender, race, class and other markers of difference intersect and shape everyday interactions on the Caribbean;
* Discuss the role of language and culture;
* Explore the connections between spirituality and aesthetics, environment and social-political empowerment;
* Look at the complex relationships between popular culture and literature;
* Understand the different social-literary movements and concepts i.e., negritude, negrismo, indigenismo, mestizaje, marronage, caribbeanness, creoleness, as well as their cultural and aesthetic implications on the intra-regional and inter-regional level;
* Explore the characteristics of creolization as an ongoing process of hybridity, plurality and diversity.