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A Far Cry from Plymouth Rock: A Personal Narrative

Written by Margo Jefferson, critic and author of On Michael Jackson for n/a on no date provided

A Far Cry From Plymouth Rock is a full-bodied tale of immigration and exploration. I love that Kwame Dawes calls it a personal narrative rather than a memoir. Here, the present and the future matter as much as the past. And movement -- geographical, intellectual and spiritual -- is the ruling force. Dawes is Ghanaian by birth and Jamaican by upbringing. Life has taken him from England to Canada and on to the American South. 

An immigrant can belong anywhere and nowhere, feel alienated yet empowered. He is the cultural outsider who can see and hear what the insider keeps trying to forget. Dawes captures the sensory details of each landscape. He turns his fierce, steady intelligence onto the legacies of Marxism, Christianity, slavery and nationalism. He shows us what it means to be a son, a father, a writer, teacher and husband. Nothing that matters goes unexamined in this eloquent book. Everything is given fresh life and meaning.

This is a review of A Far Cry from Plymouth Rock: A Personal Narrative

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