Wordy, Worldly Women Poets

Louise Bennett, Lorna Goodison and Olive Senior

Authored by: Denise deCaires Narain

The Routledge Companion to Anglophone Caribbean Literature

Print publication date:  June  2011
Online publication date:  June  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415485777
eBook ISBN: 9780203830352
Adobe ISBN: 9781136821745


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Louise Bennett’s work is indisputably acknowledged as an important ‘textual turning point’ in Caribbean literary and cultural studies. Credited with making Creole a (if not ‘the’) medium for cultural expression, she is, in John Agard’s memorable phrase, the ‘mudda-language giver’ of the Caribbean (Agard 1985: 57). In this chapter, I revisit the criteria on which Bennett’s reputation rests and suggest connections with the work of two contemporary Jamaican poets, Lorna Goodison and Olive Senior, to extend the literary possibilities for Creole performativity and poetics.

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