what if Essay

Submitted By fakhri1993
Words: 370
Pages: 2

These are statements from the novel “Soucouyant” by David Chariandy that condenses the message of the novel. In general, the novel illustrates “forgetting” not just as a illness in the form of dementia but it also shows the cultural meaning of “forgetting” in the lives of the narrator, his mother and the other characters in the story. In a cultural context, forgetting in the novel means leaving behind one’s history and tradition; not remembering the hurts and sufferings one has experienced; erasing from memory one’s dark past experiences; and turning back on one’s mistakes and sins in the past as depicted by the characters in the novel.

At the outset, the story focuses on the life of the narrator’s mother named Adele who is suffering from early onset or pre-senile dementia. The narrator here is considered a prodigal son who has run away from his home but who “longed for her as any son would for his mother, even so a frightening a mother as she had become” (33). However, after two years, he went back “to stay with Mother though I haven’t been invited to stay” (9). It seemed, as the story progresses, that the narrator wants to understand her mother’s past so he can also understand his own origins. So, he tried to ask questions from his mother who “never deliberately explained to me her past, but I learned anyway” (23). She told him “over and over again of her encounter with the creature [a soucouyant]” (136). A soucouyant according to what is written in the back cover of