2 April 2014
Life, Loss and the Pursuit of Happiness
The elements of life and death are portrayed throughout the novel Claire of the Sea Light through different characters that somehow have a connection to one another. The author Edwidge Danticat reveals in an interview “Love leads to violence” and “Dreams lead to corruption.” The love that each character has is always lost in violence and others destroy the dreams they have. The novel reveals the relationship between loss and death and how it connects to the characters and nature. It illustrates how loss can be devastating and how it can bring new life.
Imagine sharing a birthday and your mother’s death on the same day, that’s how it was for Claire Liymè Lanmè each year. Claire’s mother died giving birth to her. Claire’s father Nozias likes to think of as, “A kind of loving surrender. Only one of them was meant to survive, and the mother had surrendered her place” (17). How devastating and strange it must be to lose a wife and be left with a newborn child. This example is one of the many in the novel that shows how one dies and gives a life to another.
In the novel, Madame Gaëlle struggles with the loss of her husband and daughter. Her husband Laurent was shot at the radio station at the same time his daughter was born. Their daughter Rose was killed immediately in a car accident. Madame Gaëlle states in the novel, “Every day is an infinitely difficult day for me” (153). She struggles with the losses she has which is one of the many reasons why she sleeps around with different men. She does it to cover up her pain so no one could see that she is suffering. Claire’s father Nozias feels like he can help with Madame Gaëlle pain by giving his daughter to her. Since she was the one to breastfeed her as a child, he feels like they have a mother and daughter connection and that she would give his daughter a better successful life. This is again another example...
Cited: Danticat, Edwidge. Claire of the Sea Light. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2013. Print
"Edwidge Danticat Reaches Back -- and Forward -- in Her New Novel Set in Haiti."YouTube. YouTube, 17 Sept. 2013. Web. 01 Apr. 2014.
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