A Constant Shore Analysis

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1 Introduction
Caryl Phillips is a much respected contemporary author of English fiction and non-fiction. Today, at the age of 50, he has already written four plays, one screenplay, nine novels, and several works of non-fiction, including the essay collections The European Tribe and The Atlantic Sound. His works almost always focus on the experience of slavery and its legacy: by describing the discrimination of people of colour in past and present times, he shows how today‟s race relations have a long history. In this master dissertation, I will start by discussing how the theme of slavery and its legacy is developed in his novel A Distant Shore (2003). This will be followed by a comparison between A Distant Shore and four other novels by Phillips
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This book slightly deviates from Phillips‟ previous novels as it is set in present-day Britain, though it must be noted that his drama was always situated in today‟s society (Ledent 13). As a consequence, Phillips now openly addresses the British nation whereas his previous fictions speak to British society in a much more indirect way. In A Distant Shore, he thus shows what is going wrong in Britain today. One critic has …show more content…
pag.). This will become apparent in the depiction of the different characters who all have some or many features in common. This will also be demonstrated by the recurrence of the same themes and the same textual strategies in Phillips‟ novels. The reason why Phillips keeps repeating the same problems with regard to the British immigrant experience will also be explained. A final facet that will have my attention is the evolution that Phillips has undergone as a novelist; he started to write about the past, then he turned to the present by writing A Distant Shore – though it must be mentioned that his early dramatic production and his scripts for radio and television have always directly addressed present-day issues –, and his latest novel, Foreigners, is even based on true events. Yet before I can reach these conclusions, I will discuss the five aforementioned novels, after having given a short biography of Caryl Phillips, and a theoretical reflection on the prevalence of racism in present-day Britain.
2 Biography
Caryl Phillips was born on 13 March 1958 on the Eastern Caribbean island of St.-Kitts. When he was 12 weeks old, his parents left the Caribbean and went to England, where they settled in Leeds in a white, working-class area (Ledent xi). Phillips‟ parents chose

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