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Herbert George De Lisser Biography

(1878–1944), Daily Gleaner, Jane's Career, Planters' Punch, Susan Proudleigh, Triumphant Squalitone

jamaican jamaica novels political

Jamaican novelist and journalist, born in Falmouth, Jamaica. In 1904 he was appointed editor-in-chief of the Daily Gleaner, a position which gave him extensive knowledge of Jamaican society and an influential role in colonial politics. His allegiance was to a Fabian socialist, gradualist view of political development, similar to that of his lifelong friend, Sydney Oliver, one of the most liberal governors of Jamaica. His best-known novel, Jane's Career (1914), follows the fortunes of a country girl, and emphasizes her exploitation when she finds domestic work in urban Kingston, though she gradually learns how to climb up the social ladder. Most of de Lisser's other novels were initially published serially in Planters' Punch, edited by de Lisser, the unofficial mouthpiece of the Jamaica Imperial Association. Other novels of note include Susan Proudleigh (1915), and Triumphant Squalitone (1917), a political satire. Later novels tended to be either historical romances, such as The White Witch of Rosehall (1929), or satires of Jamaican society, like Under the Sun (1937).

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