The Butterfly's Way: Voices from the Haitian Dyaspora in the United States

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9781569472187: The Butterfly's Way: Voices from the Haitian Dyaspora in the United States

In five sections—Childhood, Migration, Half/First Generation, Return, and Future—the thirty-three contributors to this anthology write movingly, often hauntingly, of their lives in Haiti and the United States. Their dyaspora, much like a butterfly's fluctuating path, is a shifting landscape in which there is much travel between two worlds, between their place of origin and their adopted land.

This compilation of essays and poetry brings together Haitian-Americans of different generations and backgrounds, linking the voices for whom English is a first language and others whose dreams will always be in French and Kreyòl. Community activists, scholars, visual artists and filmmakers join renowned journalists, poets, novelists and memoirists to produce a poignant portrayal of lives in transition.

Edwidge Danticat, in her powerful introduction, pays tribute to Jean Dominique, a sometime participant in the Haitian dyaspora and a recent martyr to Haiti's troubled politics, and the many members of the dyaspora who refused to be silenced. Their stories confidently and passionately illustrate the joys and heartaches, hopes and aspirations of a relatively new group of immigrants belonging to two countries that have each at times maligned and embraced them.

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About the Author:

Edwidge Danticat is the author of numerous books, including Brother, I’m Dying, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award and was a National Book Award finalist; Breath, Eyes, Memory, an Oprah Book Club selection; Krik? Krak!, a National Book Award finalist; The Dew Breaker, winner of the inaugural Story Prize; and The Farming of Bones, which won an American Book Award for fiction in 1999. The recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, she has been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times, and elsewhere.

From Publishers Weekly:

The experience of Haitian ?migr?s in what novelist Danticat (Krik? Krak!; etc.) calls the "tenth" geographical "department" of HaitiA"the floating homeland, the ideological one, which joined all Haitians living in the dyaspora"Ais the theme of this collection of 33 spare and evocative essays and poems. Most of these writers fled political instability as children and describe the dual reality of alienation from yetbelonging to two worlds, forging an identity separate from that of their parents in the new country, while at the same time continuing to wait for stability in the old country. Nik?l Payen tells of her experience as a U.S. Justice Department-sponsored interpreter who uses her knowledge of Krey?l ("the language whose purpose in life up until now had been to pain and confuse me") as "an asset" to translate for refugees waiting in horrific conditions at Guantanamo Naval Base following the overthrow of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. When she witnesses the return of some of these HaitiansAdenied entrance to the U.S.Ashe likens their journey to the African Middle Passage. In another, Marie-H?l?ne Laforest, whose lighter skin color and family's wealth made her "white" in Haiti, realizes that she is simply black in America and later forges a third identity in Italy. Francie Latour, a journalist, convinces her American newspaper to send her to Haiti with a noble aim, but ends up "hitting a cultural wall" and being viewed as a "traitor" by her native people. This rich collection of writings will appeal to the growing number of Haitian-Americans and others interested in the question of the ?migr?'s sense of identity. (Feb.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description Soho Press Inc, United States, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In five sections--Childhood, Migration, Half/First Generation, Return, and Future--the thirty-three contributors to this anthology write movingly, often hauntingly, of their lives in Haiti and the United States. Their dyaspora, much like a butterfly s fluctuating path, is a shifting landscape in which there is much travel between two worlds, between their place of origin and their adopted land. This compilation of essays and poetry brings together Haitian-Americans of different generations and backgrounds, linking the voices for whom English is a first language and others whose dreams will always be in French and Kreyol. Community activists, scholars, visual artists and filmmakers join renowned journalists, poets, novelists and memoirists to produce a poignant portrayal of lives in transition. Edwidge Danticat, in her powerful introduction, pays tribute to Jean Dominique, a sometime participant in the Haitian dyaspora and a recent martyr to Haiti s troubled politics, and the many members of the dyaspora who refused to be silenced. Their stories confidently and passionately illustrate the joys and heartaches, hopes and aspirations of a relatively new group of immigrants belonging to two countries that have each at times maligned and embraced them. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9781569472187

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