Return to my Native Land

Aimé Césaire, 1969

Return to my Native Land is some sixty pages of brash and melodic free-form poetry. Its identitarian aspects come through not in a harsh positional vocalisation, but rather in the mix of warmth and wide-eyed observation marking his account of his homeland Martinique. Césaire is clearly a gifted poet, able to make affective material out of the most mundane of acts. Despite the haphazard structural integrity, rhythm, flow, and a perfectly concealed intentionality are preserved throughout. His tone does not let romanticism take the better of him. All in all, whatever his relationship to Négritude or the validity of his sociological takes (“capitalism ends in Hitler), Césaire is well worth reading.

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