chapter  24
10 Pages

Wordy, Worldly Women Poets: Louise Bennett, Lorna Goodison and Olive Senior: Denise deCaires Narain

ByLouise Bennett, Lorna Goodison, Olive Senior

Louise Bennett’s work is indisputably acknowledged as an important ‘textual turning point’ in Caribbean literary and cultural studies. Credited with making Creole a (if not ‘the’) medium for cultural expression, she is, in John Agard’s memorable phrase, the ‘mudda-language giver’ of the Caribbean (Agard 1985: 57). In this chapter, I revisit the criteria on which Bennett’s reputation rests and suggest connections with the work of two contemporary Jamaican poets, Lorna Goodison and Olive Senior, to extend the literary possibilities for Creole performativity and poetics.