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What are the stylistic devices used by Jamaica Kincaid?

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rach5el | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 31, 2010 at 1:33 AM via web

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What are the stylistic devices used by Jamaica Kincaid?

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lprono | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted September 12, 2010 at 3:12 AM (Answer #1)

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In her novels and short-stories, Kincaid employs an apparently simple and plain style to give vent to her anger against colonialism and its legacy of exploitation. Her narratives cross traditional boundaries between literary genres as they build on personal biographical events to consider larger fictional themes such as family relations, gender and sexual discrimination and the relationship between colonizer and colonized. Kincaid's style is also deeply elusive as information is purposefully withheld from readers who are then called to actively interpret the characters' emotional and psychological state of mind as well as the setting of the stories. 

Kincaid's style is rich in details (although not in explanations of what many readers will perceive as a distant world) and these call attention to her challenge against idealized ideas about the mother-daughter relationship and the exotic/heavenly nature of the Caribbean island of Antigua. The island is often described as a backward place which may be a paradise for tourists but destroys the lives of its inhabitants.

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