Massacre River: Novel
René Philoctète (Author) Edwidge Danticat (Contribution by)
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DescriptionIn 1937 the power-mad racist Generalissimo Trujillo ordered the slaughter of thousands and thousands of Haitians--and, as Philoctete puts it, death set up shop everywhere. At the heart of Massacre River is the loving marriage of the Dominican Pedro and the Haitian Adele in a little town on the Dominican border. On his way to work, Pedro worries that a massacre is in the making; an olive-drab truck packed with armed soldiers rumbles by. And then the church bells begin to ring, and there is the relentless voice on the radio everywhere, urging the slaughter of all the Haitians. Operation Cabezas Haitianas (Haitian Heads) is underway, the soldiers shout, Perejil! [Parsley!] Perish! Punish! Haitians try to pronounce perejil correctly, but fail, and weep. The town is in an uproar, Adele is ordered to say perejil but stammers. And Pedro runs home and searches for his beloved wife, searches and searches... The characters of this book not only inspired the love and outrage of an extraordinary writer like Philoctete, writes Edwidge Danticat, but continue to challenge the meaning of community and humanity in all of us.
New Directions Publishing Corporation
May 01, 2008
5.09 X 0.67 X 7.04 inches | 0.51 pounds
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About the Author
Acclaimed Haitian poet and scholar René Philoctete was a founder of the group Haiti Litteraire and a co-founder of the Spiraliste literary movement. He was devoted to Haiti and the Kreyol language, and after only a few months in Canada in 1966 during the Duvalier repression, he returned home for good, deciding that he'd rather be murdered at home than live in exile. He was widely respected for his fearless rejection of all forces of oppression. Born during the American occupation, he died in 1995, with American soldiers once again in his homeland.
Edwidge Danticat is the author of several books, including Breath, Eyes, Memory, an Oprah's Book Club selection; Krik? Krak!, a National Book Award finalist; The Farming of Bones, an American Book Award winner; and the novel-in-stories, The Dew Breaker. She is the editor of The Butterfly's Way: Voices from the Haitian Diaspora in the United States and The Beacon Best of 2000: Great Writing by Men and Women of All Colors and Cultures, Haiti Noir and Haiti Noir 2, and Best American Essays 2011. She has written several books for young adults and children--Anacaona, Behind the Mountains, Eight Days, The Last Mapou, Mama's Nightingale, and Untwine--as well as a travel narrative, After the Dance, A Walk Through Carnival in Jacmel. Her memoir, Brother, I'm Dying, was a 2007 finalist for the National Book Award and a 2008 winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography. She is a 2009 MacArthur Fellow.
Linda Coverdale has translated more than sixty books. A Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, she won the 2004 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the 2006 Scott Moncrieff Prize, and the 1997 and 2008 French-American Foundation Translation Prize. She was a finalist for the 2008 French-American Foundation Translation Prize for Life Laid Bare.