". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Monday, June 20, 2011

Andrea Levy Wins Walter Scott Prize

The Long Song takes £25,000 award for historical fiction.

Told as the memoir of an old Jamaican woman who was once a slave on a sugar-cane plantation in early 19th-century Jamaica, The Long Song beat titles including David Mitchell's tale of 18th-century Japan, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, and Tom McCarthy's experimental take on the life of a first world war radio operator, C, to win the award.

Levy said she was "very honoured" to have been chosen by judges as this year's winner. "This is a generous literary prize which focuses attention on an important aspect of the role of fiction. Fiction can – and must – step in where historians cannot go because of the rigour of their discipline. Fiction can breathe life into our lost or forgotten histories," said the author, who won the Orange prize for her evocation of a Jamaican immigrant couple in postwar London, Small Island.


T. Clear said...

I've not read her, yet she's been on my list for a long time. Recommendations?

Foxessa said...

This one!

Love, C.