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An overseas `département' of France
Colonised ­ native people exploited e.g. Slavery
Cultural and linguistic assimilation to France
Created resentment and desire to immigrate
"strangled ambition" ­ mental state of
impossibility of colonised achieving authority as
high/higher than colonialist
Poverty & illiteracy…read more

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THE `CAHIER' - 1939
A monument to black resistance and identity
Part of birth of Caribbean Francophone literature
Anti racist/colonialism/decreolisation
Négritude ­
+ Cultural & political movement by Césaire & friends
+ Aimed to reclaim black heritage vs. assimilation
+ Reappropriation of `négre' as a positive word
+ Criticsed by Sartre ­ `anti racism racism'
+ Black as a word of identity ­ created unity
Only 1 woman in the Cahier ­ result of slavery which didn't
differentiate between genders?…read more

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Written in French ­ mix of high & low register
Criticised for not using Creole ­ the native
Caribbean language that most in Maritnique
+ Creates inadequacy for reader ­ Can't understand
Césaire claimed he didn't know enough Creole
Works both ways ­ French won't understand
Martinican words used
+ Creates questions over who Cahier is aimed at…read more

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Reversal of western values:
+ Western conventions of poetry ignored
Lack of food ­ constant reminder of poverty.
+ Cultural assimilation compared to nausea/poison
+ Colonialism compared to a disease, eating the
country, no antidote
Whiteness ­ evil, pain, injustice, coldness
+ Louverture ­ Haitian hero ­ imprisoned by white…read more

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Romantic/simplified imagery of Africa ­
+ Idealisations: Africa as a Utopia
+ Mythical images from African ancestors/heritage
Much imagery to show pain -
+ E.g. Sea personified as bashing the beach (sea =
colonial power, land = colonised country)
Personification of poverty ­
+ Physical stereotypes of Africans
Repetition of sounds to reflect emotions e.g. `s' for
anger…read more

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