Midnight Robber Analysis

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The narrative of Midnight Robber chronicles the adventures and mythologizing actions of the protagonist, incorporating tales and myths from traditional African, Caribbean, North American and South American cultures. The opening lines feature the voice of a narrator, much like in folktale tradition, inviting the reader into the story: “Oho. Like it starting, oui? Don't be frightened, sweetness; is for the best. I go be with you the whole time. Trust me and let me distract you little bit with one anansi story” (Hopkinson 1). Conflicting accounts by multiple voices conveys the plot with narrative breaks and non-linear digressions. “The often overlooked or ignored oral transmissions produced by nonwestern populations are defining features of both…show more content…
The inhabitants of Toussaint have not completely forgotten the history out of which they arose on Earth. Jonkanoo has become a holiday during which they celebrate the landing of the Marryshow Corporation nation ships that had brought their ancestors to Toussaint two centuries before: “Time to remember the way their forefathers had toiled and sweated together: Taino Carib and Arawak; African; Asian; Indian; even the Euro, though some wasn’t too happy to acknowledge that-there bloodline. All the bloods flowing into one river, making a new home on a new planet” (Hopkinson 18). This explanation of Jonkanoo and the life on Earth alludes to the history of colonialism and slave trade which brought diverse populations together in the Caribbean. The moment of diasporic travel to the “Nation worlds” also encompasses the Middle Passage across the Atlantic. Ben, the programmer in charge of Garden, refers to this history when presents Tan-Tan, during the Jonkanoo, with a hat fashioned out of rattan in the intricate shape of a ship: “Long time, that hat woulda be make in the shape of a sea ship, not a rocket ship, and them black people inside woulda been lying pack-up head to toe in they own shit, with chains round them ankles. Let the child remember how black people make this crossing as free people this time” (Hopkinson 21). The memory of the galactic crossing cannot shake off an older memory of a more harrowing crossing, in which the shadowy presence of a slave ship haunts the travellers of the rocket ship. Similarly, the penal colony of New Half-Way Tree is a shadowy replica of both Jamaica and Toussaint, a space in which the processes of colonisation, discrimination and exclusion replay themselves through a number of metaphors like the barren land, labour culture and the marginalised native
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