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Marvelous Journeys

Routes of Identity in the Caribbean Novel


Margaret Heady

Marvelous Journeys explores the transition from a modernist to a postmodernist consciousness in twentieth-century Caribbean writings on identity that is reflected through a corresponding evolution in the use of the marvelous as a literary tool. For the three novelists who are the focus of this study – Jacques-Stephen Alexis, Alejo Carpentier, and Simone Schwarz-Bart – the discourse of the marvelous offers a uniquely Caribbean vehicle for capturing an elusive Caribbean «essence» as well as for coming to terms with the seemingly contradictory demands of a Parisian intellectual formation and an authentic Caribbean sensibility.
This book engages with recent debates in criticism and theory and will appeal to a broad spectrum of readers interested in Francophone literature, Caribbean studies, and literary and postcolonial theory. It contributes to the burgeoning field of Caribbean literary studies by adopting a transcultural approach to a neglected but increasingly important area of study: the circulation of ideas and influences among the Hispanic and Francophone Caribbean islands and the African and European continents.