Hopefully Looking into the Future
“Hope is the thing with feathers /That perches in the soul /And sings the tune without the words /And never stops at all.” - Emily Dickinson
In Edwidge Danticat's anthology, The Butterfly's Way: Voices from the Haitian Dyaspora in the United States, different voices of the Haitian dyasporas tell their stories on how they have hope. Whether it be a young child looking for motherly love, seeking to win a soccer game or on an even bigger scale, or getting politically active and hope that what you have done pays off. Though Haiti is often associated with negative stereotypes, whether it be associated with AIDS or "the Phrase" which was Haiti: The Poorest Nation in the Western Hemisphere (Dreyfus 57), Haitian Americans tend to look on the bright side and turn out to be very optimistic. They are not the ones to just give up, they have come too far. The hope Emily Dickinson's quote from her poem Hope is the thing with feathers describes, is what the hope Haitians have. It gets buried within a person, that never succumbs. Throughout many essays, this point is clearly supported. Though their country may not be at its best, throughout the essays, Haitians as well as this part of the Haitian dyaspora, look to move forward and become successful by the migration to the United States.
In many instances throughout the compilation of essays and poems, Haitian Americans share their stories on how they have this sense of hope. In "Restavek" , by Jean-Robert Cadet, the boy, despite the maltreatment of Florence, hopes that deep down she loves him and cares for him. In reality all she really does is abuses and uses him for what he's supposed to be doing as a restavek child. Even til the end, when the boy knows how Florence treats him, he hopes that she had gotten him something for his ceremony. In "Bonne Annee", Jean-Piere Benoit inserts a small anecdote that shows that, "Haitians hope even when there is no hope" (34)....
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