Haitian Literature in English

From Tande – Haitian fiction translated into English

I’d been thinking about doing this post for a while, but there was always another priority on my to-do list. A couple of days ago I finished reading Americanah. I really enjoyed it and it got me thinking about how good it feels to find a book that you can really fall into, whether as an escape or to expand your knowledge.

Books have always had a special place here at Tande. A couple of years ago, we even had a debate about translation, about making works available to Haitian Americans and others who might not be able to read them in the original. So, I thought I’d draw up a quick list. I hope that you’ll find the same joy and excitement reading them that I did with Adichie‘s latest.

Classics:

chauvet
Jacques Roumain’s Masters of the Dew.
For Jacques Stéphen Alexis, both General Sun, My Brother and In the Flicker of an Eyelid are available.
Love, Anger, Madness by Marie Vieux-Chauvet and René Philoctète’s Massacre River are both favorites of mine. Although I don’t know if the Philoctète, first published in 1989 qualifies as a classic yet. What’s the timeframe on that? Oh, and let’s add René Depestre’s  The Festival of the Greasy Pole.