Reading Derek Walcott
According to Breslin, Walcott's work is centrally concerned with the West Indies' imputed absence from history and lack of cohesive national identity or cultural tradition. Walcott sees this lack not as impoverishment but as an open space for creation. In his poems and plays, West Indian history becomes a realm of necessity, something to be confronted, contested, and remade through literature. What is most vexed and inspired in Walcott's work can be traced to this quixotic struggle.
Linking extensive archival research and new interviews with Walcott himself to detailed critical readings of major works, Nobody's Nation will take its place as the definitive study of the poet.
List of Abbreviations
1. Biographical Sketch
2. "Fishing the Twilight for Alternate Voices": The Early Poems and Henri Christophe
3. The Young Playwright in Jamaica
4. Adam's Amnesia: The Uses of Memory and Forgetting
5. Dead Ends and Green Beginnings: Dream on Monkey Mountain
6. Another Life: West Indian Experience and the Problems of Narration
7. "Pulling in the Seine / of the Dark Sea": "The Schooner Flight"
8. Derek Sans Terre: The Poetry of the 1980s
9. Epic Amnesia: Healing and Memory in Omeros
10. Post-Homeric Derek: The Bounty and Tiepolo's Hound
Epilogue: Toward a Just Evaluation of Walcott