• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the issue of Cultural Identity in Grace Nichols Poetry.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Discuss the issue of Cultural Identity in Grace Nichols Poetry Focussing on: Praise song for my mother Fat Black Woman Tropical Death Grace Nichols puts the image across that the issue of culture is extremely important to her. Through her poems we understand that she is confused of her identity. Grace Nichols was born in Georgetown, Guyana, in 1950 and grew up in a small country village on the Guyanese coast in the West Indies. She worked as a teacher and journalist and as part of a diploma in communications at the University of Guyana, she spent time in some of the most remote areas of Guyana, a period that influenced her writings and initiated a strong interest in Guyanese folk tales, Amerindian myths and the South American civilisations of Aztec and Inca. She came to Britain in 1977 with her partner, the poet John Agard. They now live on the coast of Sussex. She wrote a collection of originals Caribbean nursery rhymes, 'No Hicory, No Dicory, No Dock,' with him and has edited several anthologies as well as writing her own collections and performing regularly. ...read more.

Middle

In 'Fat Black Woman', when it comes to the middle of the poem Grace Nichols uses alliteration of positive imagery, '...Bright and billowing...' Alliteration adds lift and warmth to the poem and makes you smile. Both these quotes from 'Fat Black Woman' give us a quicker rhythm and an image of a warm, free and colourful place. Before we even read the poem 'Tropical Death' we instantly know that this poem is colourful as the title gives it away. We get a very positive image from the use of colour in 'Tropical Death', '...Brilliant tropical...' The idea and image of Caribbean funerals is put across as people celebrating and lots of colour. 'Praise Song for my Mother' is full of positive imagery also, '...Water to me...' This is a visual image of water and life and instantly reminds us of the colour blue and we think of Caribbean straight away because of the blue seas. 'Praise Song for my Mother', the fourth stanza is a snapshot of smells, images and colour of youth and her memory of her mother- '...You were The fish's red gill to me The flame trees spread to me The crab's leg The fried plantain smell Replenishing replenishing...' ...read more.

Conclusion

She also brings out her feelings through the structure of the poems. She uses short sentences to create a more mocking effect. In 'Fat Black Woman' she uses a short sentence at the end without any punctuation, '...Nothing much beyond size 14...' This allows readers to read at their own pace and also shows her annoyance as she ends the poem on a negative note. The structure of 'Tropical Death' is straightforward although in the fourth stanza she uses repetition '...First night Third night Nine night...' Repetition imitates heartbeat or drum beat, she has a desire to return to her African roots. The layout of the third poem 'Praise Song for my Mother' resembles her childhood four simple stanzas all begin with ' you were' this simple repetition is to represent her childhood. It is made clear that Grace Nichols is constantly in search for a sense of cultural identity through her poetry as she uses ambiguity and constant comparison of the UK and Caribbean to make the Caribbean lifestyle sound much more attractive, this is why I have come to a conclusion that she feels more comfortable in the Caribbean, this is made clear through her poetry as she is always giving us negative imagery of the UK and positive of the Caribbean. Sadia Rahman Mrs Wynne ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Grace Nichols: Hurricane Hits England section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Grace Nichols: Hurricane Hits England essays

  1. How has Grace Nichols created a sense of other cultures in her poems 'Fat ...

    Grace Nichols uses repetition to show this in 'journeying and journeying' and 'store to store'. This emphasises the effort she is putting in without result. The expression 'Lord is aggravating' is separated from the rest of the poem to show the fat black woman's isolation and her annoyance.

  2. In what ways is Grace Nichols Using an Individual, Characteristic Poetic Voice For Forest?

    With the 'teeming and creeping' there is a use of assonance as there is a vowel sound repetition, which coincides with an internal rhyme. The ends of lines four and six have an end rhyme thus proving there is an unequal rhyming scheme.

  1. How does Grace Nichols express her relationship with the two cultures she belong to ...

    In "Island man" the connection is the sea and in "like a beacon" the connection is through native foods such as "plantains salt fish/sweet potatoes" The choice of vocabulary in each poem is also similar. Both the poems are written in precise, simple vocabulary.

  2. English Language Assignment A: Response to Poetry from Other Cultures and Traditions

    He also wants to show the power and violence of nature. Heaney underestimated the power of nature and in his poem he metaphorically describes the storm as war " we are bombarded

  1. Comparison of Grace Nichols

    Although it is not expressed in 'The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping' I think being black plays a big part in this poem, this woman is very self conscious about her wait anyway but because of her colour it is dramatically multiplied.

  2. Show how the poets sense of cultural identity have been explored in the poems

    We now know that the 'Island Man' felt safe in the Caribbean environment. The secondary theme was the sea so Grace Nichols uses repetition to show the beat of it e.g groggily groggily and muffling muffling. This is done to give the reader natural imagery.

  1. An Analysis of a favourite Grace Nichols Poem - Fear.

    my child's too loving' and 'for this fear' - here again we see that the technique used is enjambment and the effect that this has is that it makes us think about the two lines as one. We see a culture clash in these two lines, again, because of specific words, which have been used.

  2. How does the poet use language, imagery and form to make their person expressive ...

    The last verse of the poem is describing the tongue like a plant in an extended metaphor. It portrays the tongue as, 'it grows back, a stump of a shoot grows longer, grows moist, grows strong veins'. The reader will then visualise a plant, with the stem growing taller and

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work