Historical Context

Political Terror in Haiti
Haiti in the early 1980s was ruled by Jean Claude ‘‘Baby Doc’’ Duvalier, son of the infamous...

(The entire section is 1277 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Literary Style

Point of View
Sophie's story is told in the first-person and is largely chronological, although some events are not explained or...

(The entire section is 1108 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Literary Techniques

Breath, Eyes, Memory fits into a long tradition of novels about the protagonist's coming of age. The Bildungsroman, or novel of...

(The entire section is 290 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Ideas for Group Discussions

In Breath, Eyes, Memory Danticat makes it clear that the relationship between a mother and her daughter is never simple and never...

(The entire section is 317 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Social Concerns

Oprah Winfrey's selection of Edwidge Danticat's first novel to her Book Club in May of 1998 attests to the young, Haitian born author's...

(The entire section is 1184 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Topics for Further Study

Read about the dictatorship of Jean Claude ‘‘Baby Doc’’ Duvalier in Haiti and discuss how it affected poverty, illiteracy, and crime...

(The entire section is 145 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Literary Precedents

Often, as is the case in the most commonly cited German prototypes of the form, a Bildungsroman tracks the artistic development of a...

(The entire section is 328 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Related Titles

Danticat has published two books since Breath, Eyes, Memory; both are similarly focused on the Haitian landscape and culture. Krik?...

(The entire section is 156 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory What Do I Read Next?

Danticat's Krik? Krak! is a collection of short stories set in Haiti. The title comes from a traditional Haitian custom of listeners...

(The entire section is 206 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Bibliography

(Masterpieces of American Fiction)

Campbell, Elaine. The Whistling Bird: Women Writers of the Caribbean. Boulder, Colo.: Lynne Rienner, 1998. Includes a useful discussion of Danticat.

Casey, Ethan. “Breath, Eyes, Memory.” Callaloo 18, no. 2 (Spring, 1995): 524ff. Sees the novel as an important literary introduction to Haitian culture at a time when Haiti’s political turmoil was in the news. Notes that the coded reference to politician Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s party, Lavalas, is a subtle statement of Danticat’s hopes for a post-Duvalier Haiti.

Charters, Mallay. “Edwidge Danticat: A Bitter Legacy Revisited.”...

(The entire section is 487 words.)

Breath, Eyes, Memory Bibliography and Further Reading

Charters, Mallay, ‘‘Edwidge Danticat: A Bitter Legacy Revisited,’’ in Publishers Weekly, August 17, 1998,...

(The entire section is 192 words.)