Introduction and Table of Contents from sx salon, issue 13
Our discussion section in this summer issue of sx salon focuses on a genre of Caribbean writing that does not receive nearly enough attention: children’s literature. As noted in the three essays included in this issue, there has been a significant increase in Caribbean children’s literature in the past decade; there has not, however, been a concurrent increase in reflections on this body of work—or even much of an acknowledgement of it as a body of work. The importance of children’s literature is not simply commercial. As Joanne Johnson declares in her discussion essay,
As a member of a small but growing community of published Caribbean children’s book authors, I recognize that we are not solely wordsmiths. Our published works are collectively and potentially a codex for cultivating an audience of readers for West Indian writers, and more.
The cultural implications of Caribbean children’s literature for generational development and for the larger Caribbean literary tradition cannot be overstated. Along with Johnson’s essay, we publish Curdella Forbes’s historically informed discussion of reading material for children in the Caribbean and Summer Edward’s consideration of the import of illustrations and overall aesthetics of Caribbean children’s literature.
Included in this issue are reviews of recent scholarly works on Jamaica and Haiti. We also carry an interview with Port-au-Prince-based artist Andre Eugene. Rounding out the issue are poetry selections from Monica Minott, 2009 first prize winner of the Small Axe literary competition, and Anton Nimblett, author of Sections of an Orange (reviewed in our June 2011 issue). Our prose selection for August features fiction by Jonathan Bellot, whose previous sx salon work may be found here.
We hope you enjoy this close-of-summer issue.
Kelly Baker Josephs
sx salon 13 (August 2013)
Higglers in Kingston: Women’s Informal Work in Jamaica by Winnifred Brown-Glaude—Danielle Phillips
Tectonic Shifts: Haiti since the Earthquake, edited by Mark Schuller and Pablo Morales—Mariana Past
Exceptional Violence: Embodied Citizenship in Transnational Jamaica, by Deborah A. Thomas—Tami Navarro
Discussion: Caribbean Children’s Literature