Jamaica Kincaid Offers Third Annual Roosevelt Lecture in 2006

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Acclaimed novelist and essayist Jamaica Kincaid read from her newest work at the Women’s and Gender Studies Program’s Eleanor Roosevelt Lecture in the fall of 2006. The author of more than ten books, including Annie John, The Autobiography of My Mother, and A Small Place, Kincaid has written about the ethical implications of the slave trade, the lingering effects of colonialism, the complexities of mother- daughter bonds, and difficult relationships between men and women.

Before a standing-room-only audience in Rapaporte Treasure Hall, Kincaid read from See Now Then, the novel that she is currently completing, which is set in a small Vermont village like the one in which Kincaid herself lives. In a lively discussion following the reading, Kincaid discussed the craft of her writing, the sources for her stories, and the ways in which the books she read as a child influenced her work. “After all these years, my writing has all the difficulties of being new,” said Kincaid, a visiting lecturer on African and African American Studies and English and American Literature and Language at Harvard University. “When I write, I work out a structure –who will speak, what they will say. It’s very angular.”

Source: Brandeis University, Women’s and Gender Studies Program News, Spring 2007.