Part III- Analysis (posted late)
Krik? Krak!, by Edwidge Danticat, was an incredibly fascinating and heart-wrenching look at how ordinary Haitian citizens have been caught up in the country's many political upheavals. Focusing on an island country whose entire history and culture I knew almost nothing about, Danticat forced me to open my eyes to the plight of the average Haitian. The characters in each of these short stories, who we later learn are all linked my family ties, all seem very real to the reader. As a result, Danticat's work appeals strongly to our emotions, and each tragedy, building one on top of the other, is poignantly felt by the audience.
Similar to all the travel literature we have read this semester, Krik? Krak! served to transport its audience to an entirely new place. Unfortunately, it was not a place where any of us would want to go. In contrasts to the romantic adventures that The Voyage of the Dawn Treader took the reader on, or the appealing attitude toward freedom that On the Road presented, Danticat's novel instead depicted a country wholly unappealing and frightening. As one of Danticat's characters tells us of life in Haiti, "at night i can't sleep. i count the bullets in the dark (8). Ultimately, Krik? Krak! was an excellent reminder to me that travel literature is not just a genre that we use as an escape, or as a pleasant window through which we can view new places and experience other cultures. Rather, travel literature, as Danticat uses it, can also be a highly effective method in informing a larger audience of the injustice, violence, and evil that goes on in the world.