Cultural Memory, History and Interpretation: An Analysis of David Dabydeen's Disappearance


  • Ms Dilshad Kaur Guru Nanak Girls College, Santpura Yamunanagar, Haryana


Memory, History, Politics, Creole, Blacks, Stereotypes,Diaspora


: David Dabydeen is remarkably committed to critically exploring the literary
contributions of the Caribbean diaspora and the often conflicting polyglot
identities that emerge from diasporic movements to and from homelands and
homeless lands marked by racism, exploitation, and violence. Language—both
the creolization of tongues and the overseer-institution of standard English—as
an instrument of colonial bondage or the painful outcome of a brutal colonial
past is also a central concern in Dabydeen's poetry and prose. His novel
Disappearance (1993) uses Creole in ways that reveal a fascination with and
resistance to Standard English. First-person narrator in this bildungsroman-type novel starts out by desiring assimilation and invisibility within white
sociolinguistic norms. These norms are exemplified in an imagined purity and
status associated with white bodies and Standard English. Narrator is
contrasted with characters and memories that recall them to the "angry, crude,
energetic" (Slave Song) rawness associated with a Creole that has little
patience for lyricism and cleanliness, given the constantly intruding wounded
history of its users.

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How to Cite

Ms Dilshad Kaur. (2020). Cultural Memory, History and Interpretation: An Analysis of David Dabydeen’s Disappearance. BRICS JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH, 10(1&2), 4-7. Retrieved from