Reviews in Retrospect: Children of the Sea by Edwige Deniticat

I started appreciating BIPOC creators thanks to an academic module. I learnt to appreciate the differences between European and American novels or poetry, understanding that reading creations from other parts of the world enriches culture for everyone. Out of everything I read, there is a story I couldn’t forget and decided to analyse further, even using it in an exam: “Children of the Sea” by Edwige Deniticat.

It is the first short story that constitutes the collection Krik Krak, setting the narration in the Duvalier’s dictatorship. The story is narrated with an epistolary technique from the point of view of the main character and his girlfriend. Dramatic tension is built in the story by the progression of different events, and because the two main characters write each other letters they will never send or receive. It is incredible how Denticat conveys the dramatic reality of migrants who remain behind, unwilling, or unable to leave the land they belong to currently possessed by a ruthless regime and political dictatorship.

This short story opened my heart and conscience to the reality of people that are forced to fight for their life and beliefs in a society that does not accept their opinion. Reading the story helped me come to terms with my privilege, realising that this condition should not prevent learning about the experiences of others. The story ultimately allows those who are not experiencing Haitian struggle to consider those who are as people and not as numbers or a statistic denoting casualties removed from our reality.

-Lisa Greghi

Featured Image Source: Pexels

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