|Salt (1996) [Novel]|
by Earl Lovelace
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(From the publisher):
Set in Trinidad, the story is launched by the mythical tale of Guinea John, an ancestor of Blackpeople, who put two corn cobs under his armpits and flew from a clifftop, away from the scene of his enslavement, back to Africa. His descendants have eaten salt, grown to heavy to fly, and cannot follow him. They are left to wrestle with their future on the island. Now, more than one hundred years after "Emancipation," like all the people who share the island--Asians, Africans, and Europeans--they need to be weaned from old captivities and welcomed into the New World.
Addressing the challenge of this liberating welcome are Alfred George, schoolteacher turned politician; Bango Durity, laborer and activist; and a swirl of unforgettable men and women--minor characters of major proportions--telling their stories in their own voices; all striving with passion and wit to make sense of their lives in the still-young country where the roles of enslaved and landowner still linger, but "the sky, the sea, every green leaf and tangle of vines sing freedom."
"I ain't come here to make the Whiteman the devil," says Bango, "I came to call him to account, as a brother, to ask him to take responsibility for his humanness....This business of being human is tougher than being the devil, or being God for that matter. And it doesn't matter whether in the role of the brutalized or brutalizer."
Original title: Salt
Genre: Fiction→ General Fiction→ Black (african-american)
Fiction→ General Fiction→ Regional Interest