The Dew Breaker Literary Essay

789 Words 4 Pages
A major issue at the center of Danticat’s novel, “The Dew Breaker” deals with the brutal military dictatorship of Haiti. There are numerous chapters in Danticat book where she expresses how brutal the Presidents army, the Tontons Macoutes, were to the citizens of Haiti. Danticat depicts the misery, violence, and suffering of the Haitian people under the hands of President Jean-Claude Duvalier and his military personnal. The novel showcases how the supreme power of Duvalier was exercised, through the macoutes, to commit crimes against humanity by personal accounts of numerous characters within the book.
President Jean-Claude Duvalier ruled Haiti from 1971 to 1986, when he was forced to flee. He succeeded to President after his father’s death at the young age of 19. He governed Haiti far longer than any other President as he announced him to be Haiti’s President for Life[1]. Duvalier is known for his brutal crimes against humanity by way of the macoutes, his military army. Duvalier would have the macoutes “round-up citizens” of Haiti to have them come and listen
…show more content…
Haitian literature is posited around three codes of positive reference: indigenism, magical realism, and Marxism[3]. Essentially, these three references show how Haiti’s grim environment held a powerful presence in literature. The destructive nature of Haiti’s government towards its people can be seen in the titles of works of literature as well as the creativity of their respective authors. It can be noted that the titles of published works of literature held a double meaning for most. In French, it may be considered funny, but in Haiti, it was usually a local saying about the governments harsh reality towards its citizen. Each one of these positive references enlightens a reader to how life in Haiti actually was and depicts Haiti’s culture and living

Related Documents